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Stile in Progress

STILE IN PROGRESS. 1968-1998. THIRTY YEARS OF L'UOMO VOGUE. IF THERE WAS ONLY ONE MENSWEAR BOOK IN THE WORLD - AND THIS WAS IT - THAT WOULD BE FINE.

This is Stile In Progress , the book published by Italian Vogue in 1998 to celebrate thirty years of L'Uomo Vogue. It is easily the single most sought after menswear book ever. Unfortunately there appear to be very few in the world. Anyone who has a copy is most likely keeping it (under lock and key) - it is that kind of book.

Spot the difference. This double page is all about the neck ties. Edited by Franca Sozzani, the book has no order other than what feels or looks right. Liberated from chronology: the sixties and the eighties, seventies and nineties happily co-exist on brilliant double pages.

And this is world class. Terry O'Neill's seventies Elton John portrait flipped round and slapped over the double page. Turn the book round and it is huge. Whoever took that image and laid it out like that deserves a medal. It is magnificent.

There is very little text. Full bleed photographs fill every page; Bruce Weber (loads), Paolo Roversi (lots, including the above), Tom Monroe (his best work)... and that's before Deborah Turbeville, Steven Klein, Steven Meisel... We have never taken so many pictures of any book. See the album. There are no bad pages.

Mind the gap. Single images are blown
up and over the wire binding. These
shoes shot by Tom Munro are made
more magical by the inspired art direction. Rarely are books of magazines better
than the best of the magazine itself - this one is.

And get this. A very sweaty Mickey Rourke chain smoking his way through the promotion of his latest film in a hotel suite. The track pants and spats proving that men's fashion is less about male models more about men like Mickey Rourke!
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