Fashion Scoop

{interview} Franca Sozzani Talks to Interview Magazine

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Documentary film producer and  advocate Livia Firth recently interviewed Franca Sozzani, editor of Italian Vogue, for Interview Magazine. Sozzani talks about the risks and the rewards of being one of fashion’s great darers, her latest passion, and how her own relationship to fashion has evolved over her three-decade career. Here we have some of the highlights from the interview

About being a risk taker: “I think I just do what I feel is good to do. Everybody can give me their suggestions, but at the end, the final risk is mine because it’s my name on the magazine. So I only do what I really feel. Everybody tries to influence you, of course: “Oh, this is the right moment to do this” and “This is the right photographer to choose,” and “This is the right model to have . . .” I listen, but I must go my own way. When you take risks, it means that you know every month people are there to judge you. Some months are good; some months are bad. When you make a mistake, they call you immediately. And when you do something good, they send flowers to the stylist. So this is a way to say that I want to do it myself. I don’t care if you like it or not. I do the magazine that I think is correct. If you like this issue, I am more than happy. If you don’t like this issue, you will like the next because we do 14 issues a year. So once in a year you will love, no? I’m very independent.”

About the future of fashion: “The future of fashion? I think it’s more and more separated—like, on one side would be big distribution, and on the other side there will be high-level prêt-à-porter and couture. I mean, the prêt-à-porter is already couture in a way for the prices and the way that it’s made. The big distribution will allow people to dress in a fashionable way, so this could be for everybody. This part of the big distribution will be stronger and stronger, but the other part we are coming up on is more and more rich people, because we’re always thinking about Europe and about America, but we are forgetting that markets have opened up in modern China, India, and, who knows, maybe even Africa. And so it will be on one side very sophisticated and very unique and very precious, and on the other side, it will be about very big distribution…”

LF: Let’s do some quick ones, Franca. What would you like to learn next?
FS: I would like to go to China and explain my point of view . . . I would also like to learn how to make a movie.
LF: What inspires you?
FS: Everything. It could be a movie. It could be a book. It could be a house. It could be one word— I’ll think for hours and hours about one word sometimes. It could be anything.
LF: Who inspires you?
FS: People who are interesting. It doesn’t matter if they are beautiful or not beautiful—interest- ing people. Do you know when you go to a very boring dinner and you sit down and you have the chance to talk with somebody and it’s so interesting that you learn so much that night that you go back and say, “Oh, finally, I met someone who inspired me”? I love that. It could even be parts of a person—the way that they exclaim, their dream.
LF: What is your relationship with men and sex? We need to talk about the sex, too.
FS: [laughs] Very good.
LF: We couldn’t be having a conversation between two women and not talk about sex for a little bit. Because you travel a lot, and you are never in the same place for more than a day, do you have a—
FS: No. You know what? I already got married a few times. I had a fantastic husband.
LF: What is your relationship with money?
FS: Quite bad. Very bad. Very bad because, for me, money is to use—it’s only to use. So I never have money because I always spend. That’s why in a way I protect myself in having houses. But if I had just cash or kept it in the bank, I’d spend it immediately. But not for stupid things. [laughs] So I don’t like to have money. I never have money in my pocket.
LF: Last question: You have a magazine. You run a magazine online. You are a goodwill ambassador. You travel all the time, you go out, you meet people. What is the secret of doing it all? How do you do it?
FS: I think that I’m still very enthusiastic about every single thing that I do. I’m still very passionate. I never feel tired because I feel so involved and so com- mitted, so I enjoy it. And you know what? I have a lot of irony. I love the humor, and when I really, really want to just say, “You know what? I can’t stand all this,” I find an ironical way. I say, “You know, maybe you presume to be more intelligent than you are.” So I respond in a more humoristic way.  
Read the full interview and all the photos shot by Peter Lindbergh at Interview Magazine.

Categories: Fashion Scoop.

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