Rave: Calendar features real women, raw talent

Sarah Harris

The Pirelli Calendar, one of the most famous calendars in the world since 1964, launched its 43rd 2016 edition last week. Now, here’s some must-know history about the calendar. In past years, famous models are splashed across the pages for each month, mostly nude. Last year, the photographers featured plus-sized models in the calendar, which was a big deal at the time.

However, this past edition went against the norm of featuring models and took a more feminist perspective. Rather than having skinny young models, photographer Annie Leibovitz, who shot the calendar in 2000 and again this year, suggested featuring writers, artists and comedians.

Some of the women that are featured included tennis superstar Serena Williams, comedian Amy Schumer, Rookie Magazine founder Tavi Gevinson, writer Fran Lebowitz, and Iranian visual artist Shirin Neshat, plus philanthropists, screenwriters, musicians and actresses. Last year, the calendar included supermodels Gigi Hadid, Joan Smalls and Adriana Lima.

The photo that I loved the most was Serena Williams’. For someone who is obviously physically fit, she embraces her strong muscles and poses in a power stance. The black and white photo enhances the shadows that her muscles create, showing the real body of a strong woman.

The calendar also reads more like a book this year with paragraphs about each woman and their accomplishments. With women from all ages, races, and talents, it’s definitely something I’d like on my wall. –S. Harris