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Annie Leibovitz Takes The Pirelli Calendar In A New Direction

Annie Leibovitz Takes The Pirelli Calendar In A New Direction

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Normally the Pirelli calendar is all about celebrating idealized versions of beauty. For 2016 it’s about celebrating real achievement and real beauty.

For 2016 Pirelli hired celebrated portrait photographer Annie Leibovitz to capture the essence of 12 women of distinction. “When Pirelli approached me, they said they wanted to make a departure from the past. 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 list includes accomplished women from around the world and all walks of life: actress Yao Chen, the first Chinese UNHCR Goodwill Ambassador; Russian top model Natalia Vodianova; Kathleen Kennedy the Chairperson of Lucas film; Agnes Gund, President Emerita of the Museum of Modern Art in New York; tennis player Serena Williams; opinion leader, critic and writer Fran Lebowitz; the President of Ariel Investments, Mellody Hobson; film director and best picture nominee Ava DuVernay; blogger Tavi Gevinson, founder of Style Rookie and online magazine Rookie; Iranian visual artist Shirin Neshat; artist, musician and performer Yoko Ono; singer Patti Smith; and the actress, writer and stand-up comedian Amy Schumer.

In a departure from past catalogues there are no nudes, except for Amy Schumer as Leibovitz explains, “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.”

You can learn more about the calendar, see exclusive content and purchase one at

Yao Chen, Tavi Gevinson, Agnes Gund and Annie Leibovitz discuss the calendar at a launch event in London.