Tire company Pirelli’s 2018 calendar will feature only black artists, models, and musicians. Some of the calendar’s highlights include Lil Yachty as The Queen’s Guard, Lupita Nyong’o as The Dormouse, Puff Daddy as The Royal Beheader, Whoopi Goldberg as The Royal Duchess, and RuPaul as The Queen of Hearts.
It's a very important date! Introducing the first protagonist of the 2018 #PirelliCalendar. @duckieofficial playing Alice in Tim Walker's Wonderland. Check out all of the protagonists and exclusive behind-the-scenes content. Link in bio. #InTheCal
A post shared by Pirelli (@pirelli) on Jul 20, 2017 at 12:01am PDT
Since its inception in 1964, the Pirelli calendar was an excuse to showcase gorgeous women, usually models, in suggestive poses and racy scenes. The calendar became an important annual event for the fashion industry and a beloved and highly anticipated aspect of pop culture. The calendar is not sold or available to the public; it is given to celebrities and other influential people in the fashion and entertainment industries.
But the corporate tire company decided to switch things up last year for its 43rd edition, shifting the concept towards social commentary. The 2016 calendar featured 13 influential women including Serena Williams, Patti Smith, Yoko Ono, and Amy Schumer posing naturally in the nude shot by Annie Leibovitz.
The influential fashion photographer Peter Lindbergh, who’s work has been featured in publications like The New Yorker, Vanity Fair, Rolling Stone, and Vogue, shot the 2017 calendar, which featured 14 completely unretouched photos of some of the most famous actresses, including Nicole Kidman, Kate Winslet, Penélope Cruz, Rooney Mara, Uma Thurman, and Alicia Vikander.
LET ME THANK MR. TRONCHETTI FOR CHANGING THE RULES AND ALLOWING ME TO BE THE FIRST PHOTOGRAPHER, IN THE OVER FIFTY YEARS LONG HISTORY OF THE CALENDAR, TO PHOTOGRAPH A THIRD PIRELLI CALENDAR. I WANT USE THIS OPPORTUNITY TO SHOW THE SENSIBILITY AND RAW EMOTIONS OF A GROUP OF WOMEN I KNOW, LOVE AND DEEPLY ADMIRE FOR MANY YEARS. TO REALIZE THIS CHALLENGING PROJECT, WE ARE TRAVELLING TO BERLIN, LOS ANGELES, LONDON AND NEW YORK. Thank you to the team @pirelli #MakingTheCal #PirelliCalendar2017 #Pirelli #TheCal #PeterLindbergh @2bmanagement @gagosiangallery
A post shared by Peter Lindbergh (@therealpeterlindbergh) on May 18, 2016 at 3:48pm PDT
This year's calendar explores themes from Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, aiming to capture “the surreal world of dreams” and reference “English culture.” It was shot by Tim Walker, known for his surreal, dreamy, and sometimes just plain wild aesthetic, and styled by the brand new British Vogue editor-in-chief Edward Enninful.
According to CNN, the full list of artists and how they are depicted is as follows:
- Adut Akech, Sudanese-Australian model as The Queen of Diamonds
- Adwoa Aboah , Ghanaian-British fashion model and feminist activist as Tweedledee
- Alpha Dia, Senegalese-German model as the 5 of Hearts Playing Card Gardner
- Djimon Hounsou, Beninese-American actor and model, as The King of Hearts
- Duckie Thot, South Sudanese-Australian model, as Alice
- King Owusu, British model, as Tweedledum, 2 of Hearts Playing Card Gardner
- Lil Yachty, American rapper and singer, as The Queen's Guard
- Lupita Nyong'o, Mexican-Kenyan actress, as The Dormouse
- Naomi Campbell, British supermodel and actress, The Royal Beheader
- RuPaul, American actor, drag queen, television personality, and singer/songwriter as The Queen of Hearts
- Sasha Lane, American actress, as The Mad March Hare
- Puff Daddy , American rapper, singer, songwriter, actor, record producer and entrepreneur as The Royal Beheader
- Slick Woods, American model, as The Mad Hatter
- Thando Hopa, South African model and lawyer, as The Princess of Hearts
- Wilson Oryema, British model, as 7 of Hearts Playing Card Gardner
- Whoopi Goldberg, American actress, comedian, author and television host, activist, as The Royal Duchess
- Zoe Bedeaux, British fashion stylist, designer and singer, as The Caterpillar