Iggy Pop, Cher and St Vincent pose for Bryan Adams
Images from artists like Cher, Iggy Pop, Jennifer Hudson and Grimes will feature in one of the world’s best-known photographic commissions.
For the Pirelli 2022 calendar, rock star and photographer Bryan Adams captured superstar singers as if they were on tour – precisely what they haven’t been able to do for over a year.
Adams had planned a different project for the 2021 schedule, but that schedule was put on hold due to Covid. When Pirelli approached him again, he pitched the idea of going on a tour.
“What was evident, because of Covid, was that no one was working,” he said. “All the musicians in the world had practically stopped, so I suggested Pirelli do a feature film ‘on the road’ because that was the only thing we couldn’t do.”
The resulting schedule will explore different aspects of the tour at different times of the day, whether it’s waking up in a hotel room, traveling on a bus, or in a green room.
The calendar will be released in November and will also feature images of Rita Ora, Normani, Bohan Phoenix, St Vincent, Saweetie and Kali Uchis.
Adams came up with the concepts, but each brought their own personality to the shoots, he said.
“You can only set up a scenario to a certain extent and then it lights up when they walk into the room.
“Each artist brought their own character. No matter what I presented to them in terms of how we were going to do it, it’s their character that shines through even though my idea may have been this or that. They made it their own business.
Photographing Iggy Pop was a special joy. Adams recalled attending a concert in Brooklyn in 1981 and seeing Pop smash a microphone in his face, breaking a front tooth.
For years, Adams wondered if this really happened, “Did I really see this?” He found out during the filming that he did.
“My story has been confirmed. . . you can imagine me as a young musician and seeing someone doing that, it was such a commitment to music. He has the same energy today. When he got on set, it was almost like, are you ready? Yes, bang, let’s go. We are now on the Iggy show. It was really exciting. He got a standing ovation at the end.
Adams has had a passion for photography since childhood and has managed to carve out a parallel career in this regard which has grown organically. “It wasn’t like there had been a conscious effort to, ‘I’m going to be a photographer.’ One thing would lead to the next thing which led to the next thing.
Adams’ memorable moments include the 2001 photograph of the Queen and Prince Philip – “we’ve had five minutes” – and projects such as the Big Issue vendor documentation.
Until the 2010s, the reputation of the Pirelli Calendar was for scorching, with top photographers taking artfully lit photos of naked women. “It’s not that anymore,” Adams said. “I’m happy. He needed to evolve. It’s much more interesting.”
In 2016, Annie Leibovitz produced portraits of women chosen for their “professional, social, cultural, sporting and artistic achievement”.
Tim Walker’s 2018 calendar was themed on Alice in Wonderland with an all-black cast including Whoopi Goldberg, Lupita Nyong’o, and RuPaul.
Adams has also written and recorded a new album over the past year. He hopes to resume touring in November and going back was important, he said, not just for himself but for all the music touring infrastructure, the team that has families who depend on the tours, the truck drivers. , people who work in merchandising, “all these different people literally out of work”. – Guardian