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  • Author: Priyanka Mantha
  • Date: JANUARY 16, 2024
  • Format: DIGITAL

On the Cover of New York: A Practical Guide to Polyamory

Photo: Maurizio Cattelan and Pierpaolo Ferrari

The January 15–28 issue of New York Magazine explores the increasingly mainstream world of ethical non-monogamy. Anchored by a closely reported feature by Allison P. Davis on one specific polycule, the issue offers poly-curious readers an in-depth guide to opening up their relationships with advice from both experienced and newly poly people (as told to Alistair Kitchen, Alyssa Shelasky, Anya Kamenetz, and Bindu Bansinath) on how to capably, or at least less messily, date non-monogamously.

“A friend recently showed me a random Hinge profile where someone declared themselves “non-monogamous,” and clarified by saying: not poly, but unethically non-monogamous,” which…am I missing something? Isn’t that just cheating? The presence of this profile confirmed a couple of things I’d been wondering: First, it’s not just my imagination (or the fact that I’m on Feeld,) brushes with ethical non-monogamy are really becoming more common,” said Davis. And also, some people appear to be pretty bad at it! Or to put it more nicely, just haven’t been exposed to all the possibilities and the nitty gritty of it all. Personally, I can’t wait to send this link to the next person on a dating app who throws the term around all willy-nilly.”

The cover image is by Maurizio Cattelan and Pierpaolo Ferrari.

Also in the issue is a substantial essay by Jonathan Chait examining how the coalition that formed in 2020 with the purpose of defeating Donald Trump is exhausted, divided, and falling apart and may result in Trump’s reelection in 2024.

Elsewhere, features writer Elizabeth Weil delves into the story of Rebecca Vance, who retreated into the Rocky Mountains with her sister and teenage son to escape the dangers she saw in the world. Weil looks at what drove Vance to take the step that ultimately led to their tragic deaths. The profile includes original photography by the fine artist David Benjamin Sherry, known for monochrome-wash images of threatened areas in the western United States, who retraced the Vances’ route.

“We pulled over and ran into the freezing snowpack, and I took the first sheet of 8-by-10 film, which ended up being the main picture of this story. It was breathtaking and epic, and also heartbreaking. I knew it was the shot I hoped to take after reading about the story,” said Sherry. “There’s an undeniable importance of — often naïve — longing for wilderness and beauty in this story. That is something I can very much relate to.” Sherry and his assistant then hiked six miles in snowshoes, carrying 40 pounds of photography equipment, to capture the location where the Vances spent their last days.