When Condé Nast first announced that it would launch its 22nd international edition of Vogue magazine, Vogue Arabia, it broke boundaries in a number of ways: It is the first Vogue to launch digitally first, as well as the first to market to an entire region. Its groundbreaking first print issue is here, and Editor-in-Chief Deena Aljuhani Abdulaziz has chosen supermodel Gigi Hadid as its first-ever cover girl.
“In one poised photograph, she communicates a thousand words to a region that’s been waiting far too long for its Vogue voice to speak,” writes Abdulaziz, “The collage of countries across the Arab world are long-deserving of a place in fashion history and there’s no better first ‘face’ to lead the charge for Vogue Arabia than Gigi, a model who defines tomorrow’s entrepreneurial and dynamic generation.” Hadid may seem like a controversial choice — there are already commenters on Vogue Arabia’s Instagram asking why another model wasn’t given this honor — but she reminds her followers on Instagram that she is half-Palestinian.
“I think the beautiful thing about there being international Vogue‘s is that, as a fashion community, we are able to celebrate, and share with the world, different cultures,” Hadid writes on Instagram. ‘Being half-Palestinian, it means the world to me to be on the first-ever cover(s) of @voguearabia, and I hope that this magazine will show another layer of the fashion industry’s desire to continue to accept, celebrate, and incorporate all people & customs and make everyone feel like they have fashion images and moments they can relate to… & learn and grow in doing so.”
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