Nov 30, 2015
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Star-studded 2016 Pirelli Calendar unveiled

Nov 30, 2015

The 2016 Pirelli Calendar has finally been revealed in full in London.

The 43rd edition of the exclusive annual publication is the work of American celebrity photographer Annie Leibovitz, who shot the work last July in her New York studio.

Serena Williams photographed by Annie Leibovitz for the 2016 Pirelli Calendar ©Annie Leibovitz for the Pirelli Calendar

Rather than take the traditional approach of using supermodels and shooting them nude, this year's calendar features 13 "women of outstanding professional, social, cultural, sporting and artistic accomplishment". From tennis ace Serena Williams to singer Patti Smith and the Hollywood actress Amy Schumer, the calendar's stars are all making waves in their industries. As was the case with the first few calendars of the 1960s and, 2002, 2008 and 2013 versions, there are no nudes.

In a further departure from the publication's previous high-octane glamour, the 2016 calendar captures the women in pared-down black and white photographs taken in Leibovitz's studio.

"When Pirelli approached me, they said they wanted to make a departure from the past," Leibovitz says. "They suggested the idea of photographing distinguished women. After we agreed on that, the goal was to be very straightforward. I wanted the pictures to show the women exactly as they are, with no pretense."

The photographer enjoyed the relaxed approach to the project, adding: "I'm a great admirer of comediennes. The Amy Schumer portrait added some fun. It's as if she didn't get the memo saying that she could keep her clothes on."

Other women starring in the calendar include Chinese actress Yao Chen, Russian model Natalia Vodianova, producer Kathleen Kennedy, art collector and patroness Agnes Gund, leader, critic and writer Fran Lebowitz, the President of Ariel Investments, Mellody Hobson, film director Ava DuVernay, blogger Tavi Gevinson, Iranian visual artist Shirin Neshat and the performer Yoko Ono.

To mark the launch of the new calendar, Pirelli has also unveiled a new website pirellicalendar.com, featuring video footage and images from the 2016 shoot in addition to material from the archives. 

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