The story of the New York magazine cover shot
Our friend and Community member Dye Another Day saw the scan of the New York magazine cover with Steven Meisel we posted earlier today. He happened to be standing about four feet from them when that shot was taken and sent us his unique story.
“I was a student and had gone to a packed lecture by Steven Meisel, in February 1992, where they had a slide show of his work. He had brought along the hairstylist Garren, and someone else, a stylist I think. He fielded questions from the audience as they showed his work.
At one point, someone said, “I hear you’re working on something with Madonna. What’s she like to work with?” (The “Sex” book, obviously.)
From the absolute back of the room, I heard, “Oh we have fun. We’re the GOOD TIME GIRLS!”
Meisel’s face just lit up. I thought, “No. It can’t be. Madonna COULDN’T have come here just for the lecture.”
When it was over, I made a dash for the back of the room to see for sure. There she was – very small, NO makeup, wearing a black leather jacket. She was with Wallis Montana, who appears in the “Sex” book and was married to the designer Claude Montana. And I think she was with Ingrid Casares. Madonna was extremely unassuming. She just stood there and chatted with Wallis. Some cute guy walked up to her and handed her a flyer of some sort – it looked like he was in some sort of show, and handed her a pass. Madonna was EXTREMELY gracious. I noticed that her eyes were stunning, even without makeup. She looked right at him, thanked him, and said, “Thanks, I’ll try to make it.” And she flashed that amazing smile. I was impressed with how generous and kind she was. No fuss about her at all. People who think she’s rude to her fans on the street don’t know what they’re talking about — if you’re polite to her, Madonna is extremely polite.
We had a photographer who shot all the people who came to our lectures. (I’ve also seen people like Herb Ritts interviewed in our classes). I can’t remember the guy’s name, but I knew him. He approached Madonna and said, “Madonna please. We’d appreciate it so much if we could get a picture of you with Steven. It’s black and white.” She had NO makeup, but said “sure.” You can see the lighting is pretty bad and the film is grainy to make it more flattering. He took a couple of shots and didn’t push it any further. He said, “Thank you Madonna” and she smiled and said, “It’s okay.” Then they all piled into a limo and sped off – it was maybe 8:30 p.m. by this time.
I smiled when I saw that New York magazine used this shot on their cover six months later when they were promoting the “sex” book.
Thought I’d share.
Take care, Happy New Year.”
Steve (Dye Another Day)
A huge thank you to Steve for sharing with all of us this little big piece of Madonna history he witnessed.