News about the upcoming 2016 Pirelli Calendar has been trickling out over the past few months, and it’s been a long, hard wait for more photos to come out. But now, with the new year approaching fast (only four more weeks to get your resolutions in order, people!), the full list of featured stars has made its way onto the Interwebs, and the calendar itself has finally debuted in London. Now it’s only a matter of time before it makes its way to America in all its glory, and you’ll want it to—the participants are prime.
Famed photographer Annie Liebovitz helmed the project this year, and was given full reign to cast whomever she deemed worthy. In a press conference early yesterday, she said:
“Pirelli came to me and told me they wanted to shift this year to something different. I made the suggestion that they do women performance artists or women comedians, almost a take-off. I just thought of women I admired and I didn’t let anyone in the studio from Pirelli. It became a very strong set of very simple portraits…No one was supposed to look like they tried in these pictures. I still can’t believe the women who agreed to do it, did it. I felt a big responsibility to that…It shouldn’t be a big step, but it is a big step.”
If we were Liebovitz, we’d be a little bit shocked too. The full list includes the likes of Amy Schumer, Serena Williams, Rookie founder Tavi Gevinson, Patti Smith, Ava DuVernay, Lucasfilm chairperson Kathleen Kennedy, Yoko Ono, Iranian visual artist Shirin Neshat, and more. The calendar has also deviated from the recent trend of focusing on overt sexuality by making it a bit more book-like: each photo is accompanied by a little paragraph about each woman’s work and influence.
As you might imagine, the first photos have found their way online, and they’re to die for:
Amy Schumer is our December girl, and the concept for this photo arose when Liebovitz suggested she post nude ironically. Ever the good sport and all-around queen, Schumer was happy to oblige.
Per usual, Tavi Gevinson is looking chic as can be.
You may not recognize Yao Chen unless you’re a frequent viewer of Chinese television, but she was also featured on Time‘s list of 100 global celebrities in 2014, and she landed a spot on Forbes‘ list of The World’s 100 Most Powerful Women in 2014.
By far one of the most influential women in New York City’s punk rock movement in the 70’s, it wouldn’t be an exploration of women of influence without Patti Smith.
(Photos: Annie Leibovitz/Pirelli Calendar, h/t ELLE)