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Pirelli Calendar: Tim Walker’s Vision of Black Beauty

“Imagination is the only weapon in the war against reality.”
-Lewis Carroll

For the 45th edition of the Pirelli Calendar, Tim Walker decided to take us down the rabbit hole with an all-black cast portrayal of Alice in Wonderland.

The Pirelli calendar is one of the most revered jobs anyone can book in the fashion world. Each year it contains some of the most beautifully shot photos of the most unusual suspects. This year, the calendar was shot by British photographer Tim Walker. Walker’s theme for the shoot was Alice In Wonderland.

Instead of a basic retelling of the story, Walker decided that he would cast an all-black band of models for the project. Some of the subjects chosen are well-known by the public such as Naomi Campbell, Sean “Diddy” Combs, RuPaul, and Whoopi Goldberg.  When asked about his vision for the calendar, Walker made a conscious decision to think outside of the box.

“Alice has been told so many times,” Tim Walker said, “and I think I wanted to go back to the genesis of the imagination behind Lewis Carroll so that you could tell it from the very beginning again. I wanted to find a different and original angle.”

The star of this year’s calendar is  Australian, South-Sudanese model Duckie Thot. Thot, pictured below via her Instagram with Walker has been blowing up this year. From modeling in tons of shows during Nyc, London, Paris, and Milan fashion weeks, to becoming one of the faces of Rihanna’s hit beauty collection Fenty Beauty, Thot has been living her dreams all year, but this was the icing on the cake. Thot made a heartfelt Instagram post thanking photographer Tim Walker for casting her in the calendar and giving her, her “dream job.”

The choice of casting in this calendar is especially meaningful because of the wave of inclusivity, especially within the fashion world. The all-black cast was also accompanied by the first black Editor-in-Chief of British Vogue, Edward Enninful, serving as the stylist of the shoot. The beautiful photo’s take us to a place of wonder and fantasy which is the purpose each year when the calendar is released. We hope to see more Pirelli Calendars like this one in the future which takes on casting other marginalized ethnicities in the business and showcasing their beauty.

To view photos from the calendar visit

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