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Pirelli Calendar

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Asphalt & Rubber is in New York right now, attending the unveiling of the 2018 Pirelli Calendar. It might seem strange that a tire manufacturer from Italy would become so famous for producing something as benign as a calendar, but the Pirelli Calendar is an institution in its own right.

A product of the fashion elite – mixing the world’s top models and celebrities with some of the most renowned photographers, at some of the most beautiful locations – the Pirelli Calendar is available only to a select few of Pirelli’s best customers, as well as the most famous of people.

For a long time, the Pirelli Calendar grew from the intersection of garage pin-up photography and high-fashion aesthetic and production, but in 2016 “The Cal” switched its tone to something more reflective of the time, and with a larger social message. Gone were the naked supermodels.

For the 2018 edition, the Pirelli Calendar continues this trend, and for the second time ever, it features an all-black cast of models, actors, celebrities, and social figures.

Relying on the talents of British photographer Tim Walker, the 2018 Pirelli Calendar retells the story of Alice in Wonderland by ?Lewis Carroll.

It features the following models: Adwoa Aboah, Sasha Lane, , Thando Hopa, Slick Woods, Zoe Bedeaux, Alpha Dia, King Owusu, Wilson Oryema, Adut Akech, and Duckie Thot as Alice – with celebrity appearances by Jaha Dukureh, Whoopi Goldberg, RuPaul, Djimon Hounsou, Puff Daddy, Naomi Campbell, Lupita Nyong, and Lil Yachty

Whether you classify the Pirelli Calendar as high-art or another sexist trope, there can be no mistaking the fact that the 2016 edition marks a tectonic shift for the iconic annual.

Annie Leibovitz is the featured photographer for the 2016 Pirelli Calendar, a role she held before on the 2000 edition, but for this go around, the famed photographer took a new approach: featuring influential women, instead of scantily clad models.

As such, the 2016 Pirelli Calendar features studio shots of Tavi Gevinson, Serena Williams, Amy Schumer, Yoko Ono, Fran Lebowitz, Patti Smith, Natalia Vodianova, Kathleen Kennedy, Yao Chen, Mellody Hobson, Ava DuVernay, Agnes Gund, & Shirin Neshat.

As far as calendars go, the Pirelli calendar is probably the most well-regarded worldwide. Featuring the very best photographers, shooting the very best models, and traveling to the most picturesque locations, the Pirelli’s annual is an exclusive item, with only a handful given to VIP Pirelli customers and celebrities. For 2013 though, the Pirelli calendar is going to look a bit different. For starters, the photographs were taken not by one of the fashion industry’s greats, but instead renowned photojournalist Steve McCurry, who is perhaps best known for his photo “Afghan Girl” that made the cover of National Geographic back in June 1985.