Indie – The Independent Style Magazine is a curious phenomenon. Published from Vienna by Clemens Steinmüller, Indie takes the now long tradition of ‘indie’ –that certain position in art, music, graphics and lifestyle that was once a form of resistance to the mainstream commercially-orientated media- and repositions it in a world of Globalism and hypermedia where, really, such old distinctions no longer relevant, at least not in the same way that they once were.
Editor in Chief Kira Stachowitsch oversees the publication of a dual-language magazine in which all of the iconography –and its incumbent symbolic aspirations for its niche audiences- still has a strong sense of being a form of alternative to the dominant culture: dark gothic posturing or the energetic anarchy of grungy teenage bands. But Indie plays games with it all. If the fashion stories, at a glance, might have a strong appeal for any kid wanting to rebel against the world in punkish arrogance, we soon notice that the clothing on the inevitably very young models is not only of the DIY flea market variety; Rick Owens or Prada are just as likely to pop up.
The current trend for all things Gothic just won’t seem to die (yep, it’s becoming the Undead of trends). So at least it’s reassuring to see that in certain capable hands, something new or at least more sophisticated can grow out of it.
Jolijn Snijders’ cover for the current issue of Indie is something of a masterpiece. Dripping in the vampirical Thanatos of youth on the edge of the abyss that we have come to recognise in work by much lauded artists such as Terence Koh or the late Dash Snow, Snijders work pushes it into a classic framework. The practically infant model gnawing on the skull shot in the flat anti-theatrical light that is so much part of Snijders’ work becomes a Vanitas for the Facebook generation. The classical connections are only underscored by the cover’s reworking of the famous Hamlet text. For something so seemingly simple to achieve such simultaneously shocking and seductive impact is testimony to its strength. Other Edition salutes it as cover of the month.
Jolijn Snijders is Creative Director of ilovefake magazine and has worked for VICE, Vogue Hommes Japan, Karl Lagerfeld, DEPT, Metal, QVEST, Supertrash, ELLE, Bijenkorf, Rodeo and Avantgarde, amongst others.