Today in Moscow, the 2011 Pirelli Calendar, now it its 38th edition, was presented to the world’s press and to other guests and collectors from around the world. The event was held at the prestigious Stanislavsky and Nemirovich-Danchenko theatre, which has, over the course of more than 90 years, been the site of operas and ballets that have become a part of the nation’s artistic heritage.
After Patrick Demarchelier immortalised China in the 2008 edition, Peter Beard drew a portrait of Botswana in 2009, and Terry Richardson covered Brazil in 2010, “The Cal 2011” features the creative genius of the multi-faceted artist Karl Lagerfeld, whose sense for art and aesthetics is renowned throughout the world.
From his Paris studio, Lagerfeld created “Mythology”, a calendar that reflects one of his deepest passions, that of Greek and Roman mythology, tales of the origins of humanity told through the adventures of gods and goddesses, heroes and heroines. On a voyage back through time transported by the universal language of photography, “Mythology” takes us to the roots of classical civilisation and takes the Pirelli Calendar back to the Old World, where nearly 140 years ago a company was born that was to become a multinational organisation with operations in over 160 nations around the world.
The 36 photos that make up the 2011 Calendar show 24 different subjects, including gods, heroes and myths. With his keen eye, Lagerfeld has ‘sculpted’ these photos both in terms of their aesthetic rigour and for the recurring references to the art of sculpture and its classical tenets. All of the photos are in black and white, which lends character to the images, exalts the beauty of the figures represented in sharp chromatic contrast, and gives them a certain three-dimensionality through the careful use of light.
“Actresses and models bring these new heroes to life and depict a new concept of the beautiful,” said Karl Lagerfeld, who, within the 2011 Pirelli Calendar, has offered up an idyllic, immortal representation of beauty. Beauty, youth, the veneration of form, and desire depict this new concept of beauty and embody the modernity in mythology.
There are 21 protagonists of this edition: 15 female models, 5 male models, and the American actress Julianne Moore. The female models include: Italian models Bianca Balti and Elisa Sednaoui; Danish model Freja Beha Erichsen; Brazilian model Isabeli Fontana (also in the 2005 Calendar by Patrick Demarchelier and in the 2009 edition by Peter Beard); Polish models Magdalena Frackowiak and Anja Rubik; Australian model Abbey Lee Kershaw (who debuted in the 2010 Calendar by Terry Richardson); Indian model Lakshmi Menon; American models Heidi Mount and Erin Wasson (who debuted in the 2005 Calendar by Patrick Demarchelier); Russian model Natasha Poly; Dutch model Lara Stone and Canadian model Daria Werbowy (both of whom Peter Beard had also chosen for the 2009 Calendar); Austrian model Iris Strubegger; and Jamaican model Jeneil Williams. The 5 male models are Baptiste Giabiconi and Sébastien Jondeau (French), Brad Kroenig and Garret Neff (American), and Jake Davis (British).