so, time for the 2nd round of my pirelli review. make sure your read the first part below.
these days i have been reading a few comments about the cal. there was obviously a huge amount of articles about it in blogs and sites, but most of them just limit themselves to report the official statements from the presentation in berlin. only few have personal comments. i must say the drooling ones are less than i was expecting. in general acritical admirers are among those just repeating official words. maybe strict copyright also prevented the usual sexist spread of masturbatory fantasies (see W editorial by bruce weber). i’m sure that many bloggers didn’t even see the rest of the calendar. the same i wonder about detractors.
it’s interesting that some detractors have gender reasons, while others just miss the most direct erotic message of the 60s and the 70s. on one side i must say that, justifying or not the existence of erotic nudity, comparing pirelli to its derivide imitators spread over the world, it seems to me that it stays as the only calendar that still sticks to erotism more to soft porn. you may find the 2009 issue a failure or a succes, but it’s out of doubts that at least there’s the will to tell a story though the images. there’s a narrative plot that keeps the 2009 cal out of soft porn. that leads to the 2nd point, why ppl complain pics aren’t hot enough or – in different words – they don’t turn watchers on enough. the fragile bilancement between beauty and nature keeps the cal in a sort of nowhere: girls’ beauty is not ‘optimized’ enough, ecological message is not ‘optimized’ either.
other detractors complain about the extremisation of modeling. like models were humiliated. i really think it’s the opposit and not because i’m a sadist! from the backstage vid you get the feeling of a deep modeling performance, a sort of body art performance that unfortunately got mostly lost in the final result. there was a sort of *dirty* modeling compared to fashion asteptic sets that was really great to watch at. like models were playing not the humiliation of themselves as women, but the humiliation of their role as models, the humiliation by nature of the body business that makes their job. like topless daria holding that smelling carcass in front of her was playing the humiliation of her role as a model that has to pose nude to show the power of her agency in ‘the power house’ issue. you may say, she was paid in both cases, she’s always paid to get off her clothing, but the issue is not nudity, it’s how nudity is used.
unfortunately the sense of modeling performance you get from the backstage vid gets lost in most of the final pictures. i think that keeping models’ tears, faces, physical sufference would have been the right solution for a cal that dared to express a dramatic ecological message through erotism. and much more nudity: real dramatic nudity. instead, most of time we have a rather stereotyped imaginary, with naked women fighting in the mud, hugging elephants with orgasmatic expressions, running and screaming, wearing exotic ethnic clothes… unfortunately a lot of trash exotism overcomes ecologism. still, compared to other stuff around, it’s certainly higher level, but… what a lost opportunity!
in this wasting of potential i’d save… guess what and who? i’d save our beloved daria. she can’t fully escape trash either as we’ll see in the next post, but certainly her pics in the pond, her painful fierceness with the dead bird, her piece of living sculpture in the tree picture are moving. as i said last week: a pearl in the desert. and it’s always so emotional to watch her working. so concentrate and professional when posing, with that boysh underlying attitude that prevents her from any concession to heterosexism. there’s something zen in her effortless erotism.
btw, some were also complaining about the removal of natives from pictures. like it was something racist. i don’t think it is actually, i see more as a restiction of fiction. as i said, to me the problem is different. the problem is the removal of models’ performance.