Asian Australian fashion influencer Margaret Zhang has been appointed Editor-In-Chief of Vogue China. This is a pretty big deal considering we hardly see Asian Australians in high and mighty/influential positions both in Australia and in around the world. It is also in a way a very “soft” way in repairing the already damaged Australia/China relationship or as The Guardian put it:
“could serve as positive soft diplomacy at a time of increasing tension between Canberra and Beijing.”
Zhang grew up in my neck of the wood “Western Sydney” way in the suburbs of West Ryde, and at 16 worked as a consultant to brands which wanted to enter the Chinese market Airbnb and Mulberry. She has never been an editor for a magazine, and will become the youngest editor-in chief at 27. It is hoped Zhang’s influence and experiences will help grow Vogue’s name in China, and that she can bring some new and innovative ways in using new media approaches to grow Vogue. This is what Zhang has had to say about her new appointment:
“there’s a lot of context about China that is lost”.
“Often it’s looked at as this one monolithic entity, as opposed to a country of individuals and innovations,”
“Vogue China has an immense platform to communicate about those individuals not only to the world but to its own citizens. There’s a huge opportunity to champion local talent — in film, music, and the fine arts, in addition to fashion — and bring it to a global stage because it’s such a recognizable brand and so trusted.”
Zhang will start her editor-ship work remotely from Sydney and will move to Beijing once the pandemic is over. Before we end this, I do want to say that as Asian Australians it is high time we look to Asia and not stay stagnant in Australia to expand our experiences and knowledge. Zhang’s appointment is an awesome one, and one which will greatly influence and grow Vogue’s brand in China. Good luck to her!
Header image via The Guardian