Dazed & Confused (magazine)
Spring 2014 cover with Scarlett Johansson
|Former editors||Jefferson Hack, Rankin|
|Frequency||6 issues per year|
Dazed & Confused is an independent British fashion, culture and arts magazine with original photography, fashion and editorial. Founded by Jefferson Hack and photographer Rankin in 1992, it is based in London but created by an international collective of writers, image-makers and stylists. Its website, Dazed Digital, was launched in 2006, and publishes daily cultural snapshots from around the globe. Luxury bi-annuals AnOther Magazine and Another Man and the website AnOtherMag.com are also part of Dazed Group.
In February 2014, Dazed revealed its first spring edition - a radical new manifesto, rebranding Dazed & Confused magazine as simply “Dazed” as part of an agenda-setting reworking of the print edition for the 21st century. The new issue features 208 pages of elaborate photography and incisive interviews, plus an upgraded modern aesthetic and has been repositioned as the “leading independent fashion and culture magazine”. The move to six seasonal issues per year enforces the group’s digital-first strategy, which has seen Dazed Digital surpass one million unique views per month
Dazed & Confused magazine founders Jefferson Hack and Rankin met in the student canteen of London College of Printing in 1989 to work together on the student magazine for the University of the Arts London. Rankin was recruiting students for the first issue, called Untitled, and Jefferson Hack was the only one to show up. After their fourth issue together they won a Guardian Media Award for photography and design, deciding to leave college to work full-time on what became Dazed & Confused. “I can still distinctly remember Rankin saying to me, ‘Do you want to stay at college and like, finish your course, or do you want to be the editor of a national magazine at the age of 19?’”  says Hack. With no means to fund their new venture, Hack phoned marketing directors until one offered £3,000 to sponsor the first issue.
Early on, their inspiration came from magazines like Andy Warhol’s Interview  and Oz magazine. Hack bought his first copy of Interview at the age of 13“ It was a special issue about the future. "Interview was a window through which I saw a world I couldn't experience through any other medium. There was no way I could have seen it on television or at school – or through my parents, because my parents weren’t interested in those things".
Beginning as a black-and-white folded poster published sporadically, the magazine soon went monthly, developing into a creative platform for new artists, musicians, designers, and filmmakers. Widely known for its irreverent attitude, Dazed & Confused represented a new wave in the British press, bringing together figures from an assortment of fields and eras to produce interviews and artwork exclusively for the magazine.
Selected notable cover stars
David Bowie (#14), Richard E Grant (#15) Bjork (#16), Tori Amos (#17), Radiohead (#19), Chloë Sevigny (#20), Neneh Cherry (#22), Robert Carlyle (#26), Stella McCartney (#36), Damien Hirst (#34) Beastie Boys (#37), Massive Attack (#39), Harmony Korine (#41), PJ Harvey (#45), Blondie (#49), Kate Moss (#51) Eminem (#66), Michael Stipe (#68), Alicia Keys (#78), Primal Scream (#90), Pharrell Williams (May 2003), Kirsten Dunst (May 2004), Björk (Sep 2004), Eva Green (April 2005), Missy Elliott (July 2005), Jamie Foxx & Kanye West (Dec 2005), Justin Timberlake (Sep 2006), Sofia Coppola (Nov 2006), Zooey Deschanel (Dec 2006), Selma Blair (Sep 2007), Madonna (April 2008), Grace Jones & Chris Cunningham (Nov 2008), Courtney Love (Jan 2009), Beth Ditto (May 2009), Kirsten Stewart (Sep 2009), Tilda Swinton (May 2010), M.I.A. (July 2010), Dakota Fanning (Sep 2010), Ai Weiwei (June 2011), Beyoncé (July 2011), Daft Punk (Dec 2011), A$AP Rocky (Feb 2012), Georgia Jagger (March 2012), Grimes (April 2012), Snoop Dogg (Aug 2012), Azealia Banks (Sep 2012), Iris Apfel (Nov 2012), Thom Yorke (Feb 2013), Elizabeth Olsen (Sep 2013), Chloë Grace Moretz (Nov 2013), James Franco (Dec 2013), Lupita N’yong (Jan 2014), Scarlett Johansson (Spring 2014)
Soon after its launch, Dazed & Confused became one of the top style magazines of the 1990s  under Katie Grand, Dazed’s first fashion director. Grand worked for Dazed & Confused for seven years; despite having no budget and no salary. Dazed’s current fashion director is Robbie Spencer, under whom the magazine is inspired equally by youth culture, the avant-garde and high fashion, reporting on autumn/winter and spring/summer fashion weeks and with high-profile exclusives, insider access and opinion. Other past fashion directors have included Katy England, Cathy Edwards, Nicola Formichetti and Karen Langley.
With Rankin at the helm, Dazed & Confused quickly became a testing ground for photographic talent, commissioning work and residencies from photographers, filmmakers and visual artists including the likes of Sharif Hamza, Willy Vanderperre, Pierre Debusschere, Jamie Hawkesworth and Karim Sadli. Other significant photographers Dazed has worked with include Hedi Slimane, Glen Luchford, Jeff Bark, JRichard Burbridge, Josh Olins, Dan Jackson, Ari Marcopoulos, Nick Knight, Terry Richardson and Benjamin Alexander Huseby.
The magazine has long supported social causes and fashionable debate with issues such as the 1998 Alexander McQueen Guest Edited Issue Fashion-Able issue (#46), which dealt with perceptions of beauty and disability in the fashion industry and 2004's South Africa issue (#115), which looked at the state of that country ten years after apartheid as the AIDS crisis continued. In 2006 Dazed & Confused joined forces with MySpace to support RED and World AIDS Day by encouraging the public to submit artwork and pledge their support to join the (RED) initiative. Other notable issues covered include Jubilee 2000 and student fees. Outside of the magazine, Dazed curated 2003’s On the Other Side of the Lens project in aid of the European Red Cross Society’s youth programmes, which saw over 80 A-list celebrities take specially commissioned photographs for a Europe-wide exhibition and book. Nicole Kidman, Angelina Jolie, Vivienne Westwood and Sofia Coppola were among the contributors, all producing work under the brief of “Inspiration”.
One of the key formats developed by Dazed & Confused was the head2head, which brings two established creatives together and documents the outcome as they discuss a wide variety of informative topics. Notable head to heads have included Outkast vs Bootsy Collins, Jack White vs Billy Childish, Beth Orton vs Donnie Fitts, Estelle vs Neneh Cherry, Jon Spencer vs Andre Williams, Bobby Conn vs Noddy Holder, Scissor Sisters vs Duran Duran, Björk vs Karl Heinzstockhausen, Carl Barat vs Mick Jones, James Lavelle vs David Alexrod, Pharrell Williams vs Roy Ayers, Alex James vs Marianne Faithfull, Billy Bragg vs Elvis Costello, Gwen Stefani vs Terry Hall, DOOM vs Ghostface Killah, Rankin vs Damien Hirst, James Franco vs Danny Boyle, Cheryl James vs Sandra Denton (Salt-n-Pepa), Pete Fowler/Andy Votel vs Michel Gondry/Paul McCartney, Greg Wilson vs Kid Acne, Starsmith vs Ellie Goulding.
For 2001’s Re:creation Awards, Dazed toured ten UK cities to discover and support new, young British creative talent, hosting seminars during the day and live events in the evening. In December 2004, Dazed held three consecutive HERO2HERO nights at the Shepherds Bush Empire, London. The central night saw The Charlatans and Ronnie Wood on stage together with Babyshambles and the Magic Numbers Supporting. The annual Converse/Dazed Emerging Artist Award is a contemporary art award that supports young artists in the period between college and professional success. The £6,000 prize was launched in 2010 in association with the Whitechapel Gallery. Dazed has also worked on events for brands like Ray-Ban, Casio G-SHOCK and Diesel, bringing them together with artists like Primal Scream, Sonic Youth and Ghostface Killah of the Wu-Tang Clan.
In 2012, to celebrate its 20th anniversary, Dazed produced Making It Up As We Go Along, an exhibition of some of its work at Somerset House, London. Curated by Jefferson Hack and Emma Reeves, it featured photography by Rankin, Nick Knight and Terry Richardson, specially commissioned projects by artists Damien Hirst and Jake and Dinos Chapman and archive fashion images by Katie England, Katie Grand, Alister Mackie and Nicola Formichetti. The exhibition was accompanied by a Dazed anniversary book of the same name, published by Rizzoli.
The Dazed Live festival first took place in east London in 2011. In the day there were talks from young creatives and keynote speakers and interactive projects and workshops, while at night there were exclusive film screenings and new bands and performances. Ideas and contributors in contemporary art, fashion, music, film and technology were presented to a youth audience to create a full weekend schedule.
Dazed & Confused relaunched its website on September 7, 2010, the first UK online publisher to do so using an HTML5 site. In 2013 Dazed Digital tripled its unique views in line with its digital-first strategy. It is now a source of news and content for the culture and fashion-conscious around the globe. Recent exclusives include a mix by Thom Yorke, a Saint Laurent Paris video premiere and an interview with Pussy Riot in prison. Themed weeks have included Peckham week, #Tripping month, Dark Arts, 93 Takeover and Girls Rule. Guest editors have included Anonymous, Dev Hynes, Björk, Nicola Formichetti, Daft Punk, Gavin Turk, Antony Hegarty, Actress, Stacy Martin, Angel Haze, Petra Collins, Versace and M.I.A.
Dazed Vision, the in-house video arm of Dazed Group, launched on November 18, 2013. It specialises in creating branded and editorial visual content for online, broadcast and beyond, translating Dazed & Confused's rich print heritage for the video era. Its first major editorial project was the year-long video strand Visionaries for Dazed Digital, which was launched by James Franco, who directed two exclusive films and curated three more for the project. Other Visionaries have included Becky&Joe, Warp Records and Matt Lambert, while future Visionaries include Björk, Jake and Dinos Chapman, Louis Vuitton menswear creative director Kim Jones and Rankin. Dazed Vision also continues to commission and schedule weekly content across the worlds of style, documentary, art, music and culture for Dazed Digital.
In 2013 Dazed launched White Label, the creative agency wing of Dazed Group, to specialize in making digital, video, print, events and social-media content for brands. White Label focuses on content creation and strategy across multiple platforms. Commercial projects have included; the Miu Miu London pop up at Cafe Royal, Swarovski KM3D-1 (the first 3D fashion film) with Kate Moss, Ray-Ban’s 75th anniversary event, films for Gucci, Fiat and Armani and production of the Chanel magazine 31 Rue Cambon.
Dazed & Confused Japan launched in April 2002, with cover stars including Hedi Silmane,. On May 16, 2008, Dazed & Confused Korea published its first issue. Cover stars have included Chloë Sevigny, Daisy Lowe and Georgia Jagger.
- Making It Up As We Go Along p. 6
- Making It Up As We Go Along p. 6
- Making It Up As We Go Along p. 8
- Making It Up As We Go Along p. 6