In an industry where we are obsessed over the battle between web and print, one man stands out ensuring Print is as strong as ever, and creating a publication which transposes medium and in turn has created its own ever growing sub-culture and influence. Tyler Brule and others at Monocle speak to NY Mag, as they examine this media phenomenon in an age where it just doesn’t seem feasible.
“The key to comprehending the Brûlé philosophy is to understand it is developed chiefly via great enthusiasms. Monocle is not naïve about the world (though reading it, you could be excused for thinking the Japanese are incapable of bad design or deflation), nor is it cynical. “Through the darkest hours of a sagging economy, there’s always an optimistic tone,” says Brûlé. “There’s lots of hectoring voices out there, a lot of anger about things, but that’s not why people come to our brand.”
The magazine is, in many ways, in distinct opposition to the prevailing winds of culture: It cares next to nothing for celebrities. It’s earnest rather than ironic. And perhaps most touchingly, it keeps wanting to unearth success stories—or to proffer advice for companies and countries that could use a bit of a rethink. As high-flying as its tastes can seem (“It’s official: The Koreans do the best hotel gyms”), Monocle also exhibits a deep curiosity about the state of infrastructure in big cities and small towns. About public housing. About measures to improve traffic safety in La Paz (hiring youths in zebra costumes had a strangely beneficial effect). About the efforts of Tbilisi to transform its skyline. It assumes its readers are every bit as interested in the goings-on at city hall in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, as they are in understanding how Afghan drug lords have destroyed the temples of a desperately remote town. It also assumes they’re eager to know where to get excellent toiletries in Zurich and delicious margaritas in Beirut.”
Read the article in full here.