Women's Wear Daily's MemoPad page says that Kent Black [mentioned on L.A.O. in February] has filled the long-vacant post of style editor at the soon-to-be-relaunched L.A. Times Sunday magazine. And WWD's Rose Apodaca isn't impressed:
LEFT BEHIND IN LA: Southern California is home to the nation's largest apparel workforce and the bull's-eye of red-carpet style -- not that readers of the beleaguered Los Angeles Times Magazine would know, given the spotty attention fashion gets in its pages. It remains to be seen whether things will improve with the appointment last week of Kent Black as its new Style Editor.
Despite a resume that includes writing for The New York Times Magazine, Rolling Stone, GQ and Details, sources at the Times say Black has little actual editing background and not much more in fashion, one of four areas the Style section covers. (The others are home design, food and gardens.) A memo from magazine editor Rick Wartzman notes that Black's "imprint" will be seen immediately. Insiders, however, point out that the magazine has been gearing up for a relaunch for the last four years.
Black was apparently handpicked by deputy features editor Michalene Busico, one of a trio appointed last November as part of a newly created editorial seat to restructure the features sections at the newspaper and magazine. A former New York Times staffer known in the L.A. Times newsroom as the Ice Queen, Busico has revamped coverage in the Home, Weekend and Food pages. Her fashion expertise also remains largely hypothetical, with the magazine's pages skewering heavily to dining and gardens in recent months, and away from clothes. Readers point to the misuse of "couture" on last Sunday's men's fashion issue (it should have simply read "clothes" or "ready-to-wear"), as evidence of the L.A. Times' fashion woes.
Other, more seasoned candidates reportedly turned down the job at the 11th hour when told of the budget. And the newspaper's fashion critic, Booth Moore, is not involved in the magazine.
Busico actually got her new title in October. Meanwhile, an ex-LAT Metro Editor or City Editor (one of many to have held one or both of those titles) emailed that the headline on today's front-page Pulitzer story in the LAT was odd (even possibly Freudian?) It reads "L.A. Times Wins 2 Pulitzer Prizes." Writes the Ex: "Did they assume Los Angeles readers might automatically assume it was The New York Times if they left off the L.A.?"