For those of you who don’t know/have more important things to worry about, the Pirelli calendar is a yearly project by the Pirelli Tyre company that collates sexualised photos of the world’s 'hottest' models (shot by the world’s 'hottest' — read: mostly male — photographers) into a calendar, so that you can feel strange arousal every time you glance at your schedule for the month. This year however, they’ve taken a different tact and we don’t think it’s too much to burl yasssss queen! from every balcony we can find.
The 2016 calendar features figures from the other 99.99% of the population that aren’t supermodels but are damned fine, including Amy Schumer (patron saint of the everywoman), Serena Williams, Patti Smith, Tavi Gevinson and Fran Leibovitz among others — and yes, they could choose to be clothed (what a world we live in). The portraits have been making headlines not just for the obvious departure from Pirelli calendar tradition but because the images themselves, shot by none other than Annie Leibovitz, are powerful and refreshing in a mediascape of so often saturated in airbrushed Kardashians.
Amy Schumer is grabbing headlines for her choice to get raw and nekkid. Schumer posted her images to Twitter with the caption “Beautiful, gross, strong, thin, fat, pretty, ugly, sexy, disgusting, flawless, woman.” The general Internet consensus has been one of frenzied, supportive agreement. Serena Williams also opted to go nude, probably to show off the fact she could break your neck (and heart) with her general power.
Other women featured include Yoko Ono, film mogul Kathleen Kennedy, Melody Hobson, Yao Chen, Agnes Gund and Sadie Rain Hope-Gund, artist Shirin Neshat, director Ava DuVernay and Natalia Vodianova.
Pirelli has been applauded for celebrating ‘real’ women this year, but corporeal semantics aside, the overwhelming response to the calendar has been positive: a joyful celebration of women of all ages, races, religions and professions and we simply cannot wait to get out hands on one.