Vogue Italia’s February issue is an ode to joy. Editor in chief Franca Sozzani told WWD that asking Mario Testino to photograph the entire  issue of the magazine was “a spontaneous decision, also in juxtaposition to photographing models who are always serious and at times ‘depressed.’ Mario’s approach to life is carefree, his laugh contagious and his ability to never take himself seriously did the rest.” Sozzani said that with the issue and its joyful images, she wished to reflect an attitude of “positive thinking,” which she has always believed is “an art.”

“In our business, joy is not always considered a good thing in photography,” said Testino. “It’s almost like angst or darkness is considered more. A comedy is never considered as good as a drama, but a comedy probably takes more skill and for me, I like having a laugh and I like living. So I approached this issue from that point of view, from a positive attitude — so every page has a smile or a laugh. There are many types of laughter: a sarcastic laugh (with the Ruth Bell story we shot in Rome), an uncontrollable giggle such as what young people have in a relationship. There is a party laugh with the story we did with Kate Moss and a more static laugh with a model in a studio.”

This story first appeared in the February 26, 2016 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

Testino underscored the freedom he had in working on the issue, which allowed him to choose “the theme, the editors, the hair stylist, the make-up artists and put it all together by designing the pages, writing the headlines and overseeing the copy.”

This is the ninth issue of an international Vogue that Testino has guest edited. “What I realize in my role as a guest editor is that the strength of the issue is in its variety,” he said.

Sozzani will host an event to fete the issue on Saturday at Milan’s Palazzo Serbelloni.


February 2016 cover of Vogue Italia, entirely photographed by Mario Testino.

February 2016 cover of Vogue Italia, entirely photographed by Mario TestinoCourtesy Photo

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