last but not least
Magnus Berger and Tenzin Wild have been at this fashion racket for quite some time. Both have been successful models (and still have the gams to book an occasional job, if the price is right) and both have had experience behind the tear sheets, too—Berger as a graphic designer at Baron & Baron and Wild in the design departments of V and Visionaire (Berger dates Julia Restoin-Roitfeld, so he might have picked up some tips there, too). They’ve teamed up to create The Last Magazine, a biannual launching this autumn and due to be fêted during fashion week. We caught up with the Swedish-born Berger, who “moved to New York for music but fell in love with fashion,” for more details.
How did you and Wild develop The Last Magazine?
I always thought Tenzin would be a great guy to work with, and I always wanted to do a magazine for and about our generation. We bounced around a few names and The Last Magazine kept on coming back—it might sound cocky, but it’s a play on that whole discussion that print journalism is in its final throws, which we don’t agree with. I just think its role has changed a bit. I see The Last as a mix between newsprint and an art book.
What are the specifics of the new title?
Biannual on a refined newsprint, oversized (21″ x 15″) and folds like a traditional newspaper, but with beautiful printing. We see it as a platform for staging fresh talent and a new generation of artists. It’s not so much the subject matter but rather how you approach it.
What were some of the influences?
There have been oversized magazines before, like Ritz and Egoiste, so its dimensions are not unique. In terms of the look, we wanted to utilize the advantages of newsprint, which is fragile—so then it’s up to the reader to dispose of it after they’ve read it, or frame it. I like the idea that there’s a surprise every time you turn the page, and with this format it’s easy to play with proportions.
It seems a new fashion title debuts every season. What sets this one apart from the other upstarts?
Lots of magazines, but not all of them are interesting. They get formulaic. Unless you’ve figured out why you want to print a magazine, it’s easier and cheaper to do it online. To be honest, this magazine might not be for everyone—but that’s not the intention, either.
Will there be online component? How important is that in magazines now?
We are working on the online version now, but it’s a pretty simple principle: What works better online, like video, music, and news, will be online; and what’s better in print will stay in the magazine. It seems that most magazines nowadays use their Web sites to tease their print editions with snippets, which is just annoying. Our Web component, launching in October, will be like the other side of the same coin.
If you had to sum up The Last in one sentence, what would it be?
It’s all things new—at last.