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System magazine is a little bit like a super group in terms of fashion magazine publishing; art director Thomas Lenthal (founder of Numéro and Paradis, art director for Dior and many other brands), Jonathan Wingfield (editor at Numéro), as well as Alexia Niedzielski and Elizabeth von Guttmann (both of the fashion insider magazine Industrie) have teamed up to found a new fashion magazine, the first issue of which has just hit an already very crowded shelf.

In terms of content, System dedicates 30 pages to the first interview with Nicolas Ghesquière since he left Balenciaga, which makes of course for a great cover story. Elsewhere, we have Azzedine Alaia who always makes for a great conversation, as well as the former CEO of Louis Vuitton for a touch of luxury, Botox king Dr Sebagh for a little gossip shock value, art director Marc Ascoli for a little 80s flair, and a feature on Ebony founder Mrs Johnson for some politically correct content. And that’s about it, which is somehow less than what we’ve grown used to expect from a volume of the size and weight of System, but then again, it’s mostly due to the magazine’s quiet and refined pace taking its time that is noticeably at odds with most titles filled to the brim with content.

In terms of design, System is beautifully done, which comes as no surprise with someone like Thomas Lenthal as creative director. Using familiar trademark elements such as the same font throughout the issue or clearly dividing text from full page-images, he realises again his particularly calm and thoughtful vision of a fashion magazine. There are also nice graphic touches, as with the gorgeous use of colour, or the repetitive inclusion of Juergen Teller’s portraits for the Ghesquière feature.

Maybe unsurprisingly, System looks rather similar to Paradis, while its content could be described as how a fashion glossy like Numéro would do a trade magazine like Industrie – which isn’t necessarily a bad thing; after all, these are pretty fantastic references and System is a clear and well done title. But considering the buzz that has been flitting around the launch of its first issue, maybe one expected System to be a little more than the sum of its parts. Or maybe we just need to give it some more time to fully find its own voice and place. To be continued.