The much anticipated Pirelli calendar has finally arrived with a handful of photos having been released.
Known for its exotic locations and provocative photos of supermodels like Cindy Crawford, Adriana Lima, Gisele Bundchen, and Kate Moss over the years, the 2016 edition breaks with tradition by choosing natural portraits of influential women from all different walks of life ranging from Serena Williams and Amy Schumer to Yoko Ono and Patti Smith who are helping shape today’s modern world.
Helmed by famed photographer Annie Leibovitz (who previously shot the calendar back in 2000) the stunning collection of black-and-white portraits stars 13 women namely: Patti Smith, 68: musician Serena Williams, 33: professional tennis player Fran Lebowitz, 64: author Amy Schumer, 34: comedian, writer, producer, director and actress Tavi Gevinson, 19: writer and magazine editor Ava DuVernay, 43: director and screenwriter Natalia Vodianova, 33: model and founder of the Naked Heart Foundation Agnes Gund, 77: philanthropist, art patron and collector and advocate for arts education Kathleen Kennedy, 62: film producer Mellody Hobson, 46: president of Ariel Investments and the current Chairman of the Board of Directors of Dreamworks Animation Shirin Neshat, 58: visual artist Yao Chen, 35: actress and the most-follwed person on China’s version of Twitter, Sina Weibo.
Pirelli veteran Natalia Vodianova is the only model alongside the list of powerful women. Speaking of the calendar’s new direction Liebowitz said, “I started to think about the roles that women play, women who have achieved something, I wanted to make a classic set of portraits. I thought that the women should look strong but natural and I decided to keep it a very simple exercise of shooting in the studio. This calendar is so completely different. It is a departure. The idea was not to have any pretense in these pictures and be very straightforward.”
The two outstanding images are that of Amy Schumer who fronts December and appears in her undies drinking from a Starbucks cu, and the other, Tennis player Serena Williams, showcases her powerful physique with her arms stretched out across a wall.
In a press conference today, Liebovitz said, “Pirelli came to me and told me they wanted to shift this year to something different. I made the suggestion that they do women performance artists or women comedians, almost a take-off. I just thought of women I admired and I didn’t let anyone in the studio from Pirelli. It became a very strong set of very simple portraits […] No one was supposed to look like they tried in these pictures.” She continued, “I still can’t believe the women who agreed to do it, did it. I felt a big responsibility to that […] It shouldn’t be a big step, but it is a big step.”
The new calendar is produced in a book format with a paragraph of description about each participant, it’ll be produced in a limited print run and will be provided to VIPs and important Pirelli customers. The full series of images in the calendar will be seen by a lucky few on Pirelli’s mailing list.
Check out 6 of the stunning images below and sound off on twitter @fmd1_com using the hashtag #lovefmd.
SERENA WILLIAMS, APRIL
PATTI SMITH, NOVEMBER
TAVI GEVINSON, AUGUST
YAO CHEN, FOREWORD
AMY SCHUMER, DECEMBER
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