25 January 2020

Title Photo: Thomas Lohr
Pictures: Courtesy of Fantastic Man, Issue No. 30
Interview & Intro: Martin Hufnagel


For the 30th issue the team behind Fantastic Man decided that this was the perfect occasion for a facelift: new shape, now logo and new font.
With the launch of Fantastic Man at The Wasted Hour, Martin had a quick chat with the magazine’s editor-in-chief Gert Jonkers.  

Why did you decide to change the format and the logo?

It’s been 15 years since we started Fantastic Man, and we enjoy the idea of starting all over again: new format, new paper, new thoughts, new logo. We’re our own bosses, so we can do whatever we want, which is a great feeling of freedom.

How was the reaction to the new layout?

Amazing. People are excited to see the changes. I think we had one reader complain via email. Sorry!

What motivates you to still do a print magazine?

We’re fans of print. We love the time and patience it takes to edit and produce, and the time and attention it requires to read and digest. Print can be beautiful. It’s a truly tactile thing. I’ve yet not seen a good replacement medium. 

What’s the biggest challenge for you as an editor-in-chief?

Dressing like an editor-in-chief.

Do you have a favourite story in this issue?

The story by Eliot Haworth about Forensic Architecture and their investigations into the sad killing of queer activist Zak Kostopoulos on the streets of Athens is a gripping read. Fashion wise, I love the story on the cover, shot by Mark Keane with the consistently exciting Jodie Barnes styling. Such an interesting study into the limits of clothes.

As a single image, I love the picture of the fuzzy window in the wall of a monastery on Mount Athos by Kuba Ryniewicz on page 194.

What’s your favourite Greek island?

I have exciting memories of Paros, but not so much because of the landscape or anything, I just had some good times there. I wouldn’t go back though and would rather discover some islands that I don’t know yet. For tacky entertainment, so dancing on the table at 4am, Mykonos is unparalleled. 

Any advice for someone who wants to start a print magazine?

Once you’ve printed the first issue, send a copy to everyone you know. Be generous.

Is there a special idea behind the unique shape that you’ve chosen?

The square is perfect. It feels like an object, a platform, it does wonders for photography, and each page can hold an ocean of text.

What was (or still is) the core idea of Fantastic Man?

You can take the title very literally: We’re interested in fantastic men. 

Thank you, Gert and the rest of the Fantastic Man team, for being part of THE WASTED HOUR.

See more of Fantastic Man here:
Gert's Instagram