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Anna Wintour pays tribute to Andre Leon Talley and their 'complicated' relationship

Anna Wintour and Andre Leon Talley attend Lee Daniels' 'The Butler' New York Premiere at the Ziegfeld Theater in New York August 5, 2013. Picture: Reuters/Andrew Kelly/File Photo

Anna Wintour and Andre Leon Talley attend Lee Daniels' 'The Butler' New York Premiere at the Ziegfeld Theater in New York August 5, 2013. Picture: Reuters/Andrew Kelly/File Photo

Published Jan 20, 2022

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Vogue's editor-in-chief Anna Wintour has addressed her “complicated” relationship to the late Andre Leon Talley in her tribute to him on magazine's website.

The long serving editor-in-chief of Vogue - a position she has held since 1988 - issued a statement honouring the magazine’s former creative director following his death aged 73 on 18 January, but she also admitted to having frosty moments with the fashion icon.

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In a statement shared on the fashion bible's website, the 72-year-old star said: “Like many decades-long relationships, there were complicated moments, but all I want to remember today, all I care about, is the brilliant and compassionate man who was a generous and loving friend to me and to my family for many, many years, and who we will all miss so much.”

Andre - who boasted many roles such as the Paris Bureau Chief of Women’s Wear Daily, fashion editor at Andy Warhol’s Interview magazine, long-time trusted confidant of Karl Lagerfeld and apprentice to Diana Vreeland - gave his side of the rift between him and the former ‘House and Garden’ editor-in-chief in his 2020 memoir “The Chiffon Trenches”.

He branded her “ruthless” and unable of “simple human kindness” after cutting him - allegedly without telling him - from his legendary interview gig on the steps of the Met Gala and replacing him with a YouTube star, Liza Koshy.

He also claimed his role was cut for being too “old, overweight, uncool.”

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However, a source told Page Six that the Conde Nast executive and the former “America’s Next Top Model” judge made amends before his recent passing.

They said: “I do know they did make up, that their relationship was repaired recently — after everything that happened."

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In her statement, Anna added: “The loss of Andre is felt by so many of us today: the designers he enthusiastically cheered on every season, and who loved him for it; the generations he inspired to work in the industry, seeing a figure who broke boundaries while never forgetting where he started from; those who knew fashion, and Vogue, simply because of him; and, not forgetting, the multitude of colleagues over the years who were consistently buoyed by every new discovery of Andre’s, which he would discuss loudly, and volubly — no one could make people more excited about the most seemingly insignificant fashion details than him.”

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Deaths and Tributes

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