Jop van Bennekom and Gert Jonkers co-founded Fantastic Man, one of the most significant new fashion publications of the last decade.
Van Bennekom and Jonkers told Interview magazine, “I think we’re very much defined by what we don’t like. There wasn’t a magazine out there, a men’s magazine, that felt contemporary and for us. We couldn’t identify with all the models being used in magazines, all the 12-year-olds. . . We thought, Let’s redefine a men’s magazine and make a contemporary magazine for us 30-plus guys who don’t want to wear sportswear anymore but also maybe don’t wanna wear suits yet—something in between. It’s also a magazine that’s kind of exclusive and chic again. It doesn’t talk to you as a consumer but as a reader.”
Van Bennekom told eye magazine, that growing up in rural Holland, The Face, i-D and NME were extremely influential in his development, “I was addicted to otherness.” Jonkers and Van Bennekom met each other in 1997 working on Blvd, a sophisticated Dutch cultural and lifestyle magazine.
The pair collaborated on a gay culture magazine, Butt, in 2001, which had immediate impact. The two then turned to Fanatstic Man and continued their success with The Gentlewoman and COS Magazine (Collection of Style).
Frank, witty, intelligent, the pair and their output are blessedly different in a homogenised industry.