Sandra Brant (left) and Ingrid Sischy on April 20, 2015 | Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images
Perhaps best known as the iconic editor in chief of Interview magazine, Ingrid Sischy was a much-admired fashion, art, and pop culture critic who left the magazine and became a contributor to Conde Nast and Vanity Fair. She died today, July 24, at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. The cause of death was breast cancer, according to her friend Ed Filipowski.
Sischy met her wife Sandra Brant while at Interview, since she was the president and publisher of the magazine at the time. In the last few weeks, Sischy and Brant were married, according to an obituary VF editor in chief Graydon Carter published:
"She shared her life with Sandy Brant. In the beginning they were editor and publisher of Interview magazine. Over the years their relationship became more personal, and once together, they became inseparable. It was rare to see one without the other. At the end, they had been together for 25 years, and married for the last couple of weeks. They lived well, dividing their time between a big Stanford White summer cottage far out on the tip of Long Island, and a town house in Greenwich Village. I live nearby and would regularly see them at restaurants in the neighborhood, much the way you bump into people in a small town. I remember going to dinner at their place soon after they moved in. It was a small group: just the three of us and Julian Schnabel and his then wife Olatz. Ingrid and Sandy were not teetotalers, but they weren't big drinkers either, and their bar, such as it was, could only be described as threadbare. The next day I had a proper line-up of necessary liquor delivered as a housewarming gift."
Born in Johannesburg, South Africa, in 1952, Sischy was raised in Edinburgh, Scotland. She attended Sarah Lawrence College, and worked for the Museum of Modern Art for a bit. She got her start in the art world as editor of Art Forum from 1979 to 1987, and she was as a photography and fashion critic of the New Yorker from 1988 to 1996. As WWD points out, "some of her milestone pieces were on Robert Mapplethorpe at the height of the AIDS crisis and the Corcoran cancellation and the first profiles on Miuccia Prada, Alexander McQueen and Azzedine Alaia."
But it was when she took over Andy Warhol's Interview in 1990 that she made her mark known. That chronicle of '90s pop culture --with high-profile interviews that blended fashion, art, celebrity, and entertainment -- would shape global culture for decades to come. "I thought I'd stay a few years, devote myself to helping the magazine find its post-Warhol life, and then get back to my writing," Sischy later wrote. She stayed until 2008.
She had been serving as an international editor of Conde Nast International since 2008, contributing to German Vogue and the French, Italian, and Spanish editions of Vanity Fair. Her last written piece, "The Boy Who Loved Chanel," will appear in Vanity Fair's September issue.