LONDON — Speculation surrounding influencer and filmmaker Margaret Zhang getting the top job at Vogue China has been buzzing in New York and Beijing for the past few days.
Influencer Bryan Boy tweeted Wednesday to congratulate Zhang’s potential appointment. “Congratulations Margaret Zhang — if she is the new Vogue China Editor in Chief!” he said, and later retweeted himself, adding that “The keyword is *IF! Nothing is confirmed until an announcement so y’all hold your horses.”
Sources in China, though, say otherwise regarding Zhang’s possible appointment, as one version indicates that the new editor is coming from Malaysia.
Congratulations Margaret Zhang — if she is the new Vogue China Editor in Chief!
— bryanboy (@bryanboy) January 13, 2021
Condé Nast Communications later retweeted that “Nothing to announce yet @bryanboy. We’re finalizing our Vogue China Editor-in-Chief decision and will share with the world soon.” This brief statement didn’t confirm or deny Zhang’s appointment.
Zhang could not be reached immediately for comment.
Nothing to announce yet @bryanboy. We're finalizing our Vogue China Editor-in-Chief decision and will share with the world soon.
— Condé Nast Communications (@CondeNastComms) January 13, 2021
Regardless, Zhang is no stranger to Vogue China. She produced two digital covers for the launch issue of Vogue Me in 2016.
The Australian-born-Chinese Zhang, 27, has made a name for herself in the fashion industry as an influencer, model, photographer, writer and consultant since the launch of her website in 2009. She has worked with several fashion labels and publications globally, and she was also the first Asian face to front the cover of Elle Australia. The Face magazine appointed Zhang as creative director at large for Asia for its relaunch in 2019.
But in recent years, Zhang has generally moved away from fashion to work on her first full-length feature film.
As first reported by WWD, Anna Wintour, who was promoted to chief content officer at the company in December, has been interviewing candidates with an overseas Chinese background in the past month to succeed Angelica Cheung, who stepped down last month. Cheung launched the magazine 16 years ago.
While Zhang is a name coming up frequently in the discussions, no one can confirm whether she will be the new editor in chief. The response to Bryan Boy’s Twitter feed has been positive so far.
One source within Condé Nast China worries that Zhang’s lack of experience in the Chinese publishing market, which has been increasingly diverging from the West, could mean it would take some time for her to learn the entirety of the role.
As the speculation continues, a source told WWD that Wintour reached out to Hung Huang for the job, but Huang turned down the offer. Another source said Wintour has also reached out to several former Vogue China editors to fill the vacancy, but none agreed to do so in the end.