We were lucky enough to speak to Gert Jonkers recently, who, along with Jop van Bennekom head up the team at Fantastic Man. It’s no secret that we’re big FM fans at Brandish, and one look at the magazine’s clever art direction, witty articles and embedded fashion editorials will show you why. Nowhere else can you read about Beryl Woodsware crockery and Tom Ford in the same magazine so it was a real privilege to speak to Jonkers, stay tuned for part two of this interview tomorrow.
Butt, your first magazine, took a very European view of sex, happily mixing explicit and intellectual content. You’ve kind of done the same thing with Fantastic Man, is that just yours and van Bennekom’s general approach to life?
Yes I guess so. We love reality, and the reality of life is that it’s sometimes quite mundane, sometimes quite thoughtful, sometimes quite exciting, sometimes quite complex, and sometimes quite plain. Why would a magazine have a completely different take on life?
Was it easier to develop the magazine slowly because you both had other projects/jobs going on?
We didn’t have an awful lot of other projects or jobs going on. Or, I should say, in order to be able to start our magazines we had do certain chores on the side, to make a living, but other than that it wasn’t like we were doing Fantastic Man in our spare time. The opposite, I would say.
We’ve both always worked in relation to the fashion industry, either as a journalist and fashion critic or as an art director. Therefore it was quite natural for us to start a magazine with a great interest in fashion.
You’ve said before you’re “trying to look at menswear in an anthropological way” where does this come from?
Don’t know where this comes from; our being Dutch? Our upbringing? All I know is that we’re fascinated by people and their behaviour and appearance. As I said before, we’re interested in reality and so we’re not sitting in our office cooking up a fashion fairy tale.