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2009 Pirelli Calendar Offers Combination of Feminine Beauty, Wild African Nature

Milan/Prague, August 26 2008 – The 2009 version of the Pirelli Calendar, an exceptional and unrivalled collection of photos of beautiful women in singular, inimitable environments, will be unveiled in Berlin in November 2008. While the Pirelli Calendar for 2008 featured the extraordinary setting of Shanghai’s famous Old French Concession, with its massage parlors and houses of ill repute, next year’s calendar will have us admiring the beauty and elegance of the female body against the backdrop of African wilderness. The challenging task of offering the public something that few have managed thus far, i.e., combining unbridled nature and wildlife with the grandeur of the female body, was undertaken by American artist Peter Beard. The setting is not unfamiliar to Beard, who, originally a medical student and later an art graduate of Yale, earned fame for his photos of African wildlife and ultimately became a vocal critic of those who exploit the natural resources that Africa has to offer. It is interesting that this photographer, who fights to conserve African’s wilderness via his photography, shows in the 2009 Pirelli Calendar a remarkable connection between that which has been preserved and that which is the product of modern civilization, which often treats nature so unkindly.

“The Pirelli Calendar has many functions—it pleases both the eye and the soul and offers a different, quite often fresh, and always interesting look at female beauty—every time in a different place and different way. Every year we wait to see what the chosen photographer will surprise us with,” said Zdeněk Vacl, Marketing Manager, Pirelli Tyre Czech. “Moreover, the now-classic Pirelli Calendar helps charity activities through auctions. This year, however, it offers even more: the opportunity to ponder—especially when confronted with beauty—over man’s activities, and thus consider to what extent his impact on nature is sustainable for mankind itself,” added Mr. Vacl.

The Pirelli Calendar was first introduced in 1964 and, with the exception of the years between 1975 and 1983 when it was not issued, has each year constituted a major event in global photography. Over the years, a number of prominent photographers have contributed, e.g., Richard Avedon, Annie Leibovitz, Peter Lindbergh, Bruce Weber, and, last year, the Peter Beard working with a model renowned French photographer Peter Demarchelier. For the 2009 Pirelli Calendar, Peter Beard chose seven models as the symbols of beauty showcased in incomparable African settings featuring pristine and unbridled wilderness, such as the Okavango Delta and the Kalahari Desert in Botswana. This year’s models are Daria Werbowy, Emanuela de Paula, Isabeli Fontana, Lara Stone, Malgosia Bela, Mariacarla Boscono, and Rianne Ten Haken.

Beard has befriended and cooperated on other projects with countless other artists, including Andy Warhol, Andrew Wyeth, Richard Lindner, Terry Southern, Truman Capote, and Francis Bacon. By the irony of fate, this great friend and conservationist of African wilderness was injured by an elephant’s tusk and trampled by an elephant in 1966. He currently lives with his wife, Nejma, and daughter, Zara, alternately in New York, Montauk Point and Kenya.

The Pirelli Calendar has traditionally been intended for important customers, famous personalities and heads of states, among them Czech President Václav Klaus. In recent years the Pirelli Calendar has also become an object of sale in online auctions in the Czech Republic. An auction held within the last year brought 171,000 crowns, which was earmarked for purchasing an inverse microscope for genetic analyses for Masaryk Oncological Institute.

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