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Vogue China’s Margaret Zhang, youngest person appointed as an editor at magazine group, to step down

<span>Margaret Zhang at the 2023 Met Gala in New York. Zhang rose to prominence as a teenage fashion blogger in Sydney and by her early 20s, she had amassed over 1 million followers on Instagram.</span><span>Photograph: Cindy Ord/MG23/Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue</span>
Margaret Zhang at the 2023 Met Gala in New York. Zhang rose to prominence as a teenage fashion blogger in Sydney and by her early 20s, she had amassed over 1 million followers on Instagram.Photograph: Cindy Ord/MG23/Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue

Three years after becoming the youngest person to hold an editor title at Vogue, Margaret Zhang is leaving her position as editorial director of Vogue China.

The Australian Chinese creative director announced her exit on Instagram on Monday, writing: “As we kick off a transformative Year of the Dragon, I’m excited to announce that I have decided to wrap up with Vogue and jump into the next chapter of my career.”

Zhang rose to prominence as a teenage fashion blogger in Sydney. By her early 20s, she had amassed over 1 million followers on Instagram, and was working in New York as a creative director and brand consultant.

Her 2021 appointment as editorial director of Vogue China at age 27 was controversial at the time due to her youth, Australian upbringing and digital media background.

Related: Chinese Australian fashion influencer Margaret Zhang appointed editor-in-chief of Vogue China

These issues resurfaced throughout her tenure at Vogue, with two Chinese media executives publicly accusing her of being too western, in 2022 and 2023.

But in an exit letter posted to Instagram and X, Zhang listed an international eye as one of her proudest achievements at Vogue China. “Never before have we seen so much Chinese creativity showcased across the global network of Vogue editions,” she wrote.

On Instagram, Zhang received support from prominent media figures. Former US InStyle editor in chief, Laura Brown, also Australian, wrote: “Onwards!” followed by a fist and heart emoji. On X, users expressed sadness at her departure and praised the creativity of magazine covers under her tenure.

Guardian Australia contacted Zhang for comment.

In a statement to staff, reported by WWD, Condé Nast chief content officer Anna Wintour said it was her “top priority to find a visionary new leader without delay”.

The editorial director’s exit comes amid broader reshuffles at Vogue and publisher Condé Nast. In the UK, Edward Enninful’s final issue as British Vogue’s editor in chief was released earlier this month. His successor Chioma Nnadi, is working under the title head of editorial content, rather than editor in chief.

In the US, the publisher announced the closure of music title Pitchfork in January. Later that month more than 400 unionised Condé Nast staff undertook a 24-hour walkout strike, protesting management’s handling of labour negotiations.