The Tom & Lorenzo Archives: 2006 -2011
Our current site is here: www.tomandlorenzo.com

Calvin Klein's Spring 2010 Campaign (NSFW)

A little Monday Morning Meat.


Steven Klein - Photographer
David Agbodji - Model
Fabien Baron - Art Director









Believe it or not, we don't find these pictures all that hot. They're striking and he's stunningly beautiful and we're always happy to see a model of color (especially a male, since black men are even more invisible than black women in fashion), but something about this isn't working for us. It's the greasiness. All we can think is "Ohmigod, you are ruining those clothes with all that baby oil!" And we don't think it helped with the posing. Clearly he couldn't move around much without getting oil streaks all over everything and that stiffness comes through. Look at the way his hands are positioned in the clothed shots. Carefully placed so as not to stain the clothing. There's no sensuality to it.

And in typical CK style, it's been slapped up on a billboard just to piss people off and get them talking. That trick's been working for 30 years.


[Photos: models.com]



Post a Comment
75 comments:
Clueless Jock

A bit on the skinny side for CK, no?


NSFW - not safe for work


@Tampa Bay

Not Safe for Work


TampaBay said...

What is NSFW?



Not Safe For Work. Used to describe Internet content generally inappropriate for the typical workplace.


The model is very attractive. He looks like a sculpture.
There was a discussion of sharkskin the textile vs. actual skin of a shark ( galuchat or shagreen) yesterday. I think the last suit is made out of the textile sharkskin.


NSFW - depends on your work ;)


He's gorgeous and I'm glad they're using a black model, but I'm not so crazy about the naked shots paired with the shots where he's dressed. I don't really see the point.


Agree that the clothed shots are stiff and formulaic but the shots of his body are beautiful - other worldly. He looks like he is made of some new kind of chrome - ebony chrome.


They've oiled all the humanity out of him. He looks like he's made of plastic.


SusanID on 2/1/10 at 10:50 AM said.... Agree that the clothed shots are stiff and formulaic but the shots of his body are beautiful - other worldly. He looks like he is made of some new kind of chrome - ebony chrome.

I think that is the whole point of this advertisement...The model is supposed to look like an android mannequin as in..."Is it real or is it Memorex?".

TampaBay


I find it odd that he looks so ripped yet so terribly slight in the clothes. The clothes seem to hang loose.y.


His nude shots are beautiful, but there's absolutely no sexy there. It would be hard to be sexy when you're that oily, I suspect. But he does look stunning.

With clothes, blech. Like you said, far too stiff posing because of all the oil. Couldn't they have taken the clothed shots first and then greased him up?


Can we talk about the hypersexualization of black men? Seriously, a black guy gets a MAJOR campaign and he must be naked in half of the picture. It isn't even about clothes, moving across the image the first thing one sees is his (hot) black ass. Ugh.


Too much shiny stuff, both the gorgeous, gorgeous man and the clothes. Shiny just doesn't look good on guys -- and very few women can pull it off.


GAK McCarver said...

Can we talk about the hypersexualization of black men? Seriously, a black guy gets a MAJOR campaign and he must be naked in half of the picture. It isn't even about clothes, moving across the image the first thing one sees is his (hot) black ass. Ugh.


I understand what you're saying but I don't think it applies here. CK ads are always hypersexualized no matter the race or gender of the model.


Call me old...'cause I am...but even though the shots are indeed beautiful, I find the clothed ones stiff, and unsexy, and I find (please dont; flame me) that the naked ones, though gorgeous and amazing, bring to mind the scene in "Roots" where they oiled down the slaves to hide any blemishes. Part of it is the oil, and part of it is that the model does indeed still seem stiff and uncomfortable even out of the clothes they were trying to hard nto to stain. Am I awful? He just seems too posed and uneasy to me. The first shot is the best one. The rest...even though he's a freaking God...meh.


After reviewing the billboard, I have come to the conclusion the model has been photoshopped to death.

TampaBay


Wow that man is a gorgeous masterpiece, thank you CK.


the other problem - or the main problem perhaps - is that they frame him too tightly as if he is forced to bend his head down in order to fit into the frame's box. The photo itself is confining and entrapping. It feels very uncomfortable to me.


This comment has been removed by the author.

You guys are on the money. He's beautiful, and I realize they were going for a de-animated effect, sort of a reverse Pygmalion. But they've managed to make a living, breathing human look inanimate, and I don't think that's a good thing. On top of that, it feels done to death.

Glad to see I'm not the only one who didn't know what NSFW means!


Shiny man, shiny clothes. We get it.


The baby oil situ has definitely affected how much he can change up the posing, making it a less than interesting shoot....Cute butt though :)


I kind of like the one where the white shirt's ruined by the oil. It looks more natural and sensual than the other ones. The naked shots are statuesque, but I'm not sold on any of the suits.


poor guy looks laminated.


another laura

I feel you, Wendy. I'm not that big a fan of the oiled-up man photo, but the oiled-up man of color - I suppose it's White American Guilt but it makes me uncomfortable, anyway. And he looks sooo stiff in the clothes.


Not sexy, despite the beautiful man. The oil is a real turn off, as well as the stiff posing. I get the jist of the real man/android man thing, but it ain't working for this gal. I'd love to see this guy without the oil slick.


His HANDS are HUGE, if you know what I mean. Gorgeous!


when your brand sucks just let the hot bodies do the talking ;)


I have to say, Wendy, I had the same thought. It's the one where his back is to us and his hands are in front together that really gets me--it looks like his hands could be chained in the front. I find this photoshoot disturbing, and the lack of awareness for the black-men-as-meat-on-an auctioner's-block history startling.


TLo said:
"...but something about this isn't working for us. It's the greasiness. All we can think is "Ohmigod, you are ruining those clothes with all that baby oil!"

Oh my, so prissy today! Since when is the fashion industry about reality? You boys are not ususally so literal. for example, I don't think Alexander McQueen expects anyone to wear their headcoverings (from their recent show you covered), but we can still appreciate the clothes.

Anyway, you gave me a good smile today boys!


Looks like they are going for a male version of Grace Jones! Pull up to the bumper, baby.


He looks inhuman, like a machine or alien. Because he is a model of color, that freaks me out, removing his humanity from him.

I also just don't get the point of pairing the shots.


Agreed -- beautiful rather than sexy. But so beautiful!


It's nice to see they're using a black model, but why the fuck does he have to be entirely naked? Not that I don't appreciate the beauty of his male form (and I do), but it just looks fricking ridiculous, completely lacking in sexiness or allure, but instead weirdly exploitative, which is NOT something one should go near when using a black model, Old White Men. The oiled-up and stiff look is just stupid, like they had a horny 19-yr.-old style the model: "Just stay still and let me grease you up." Blergh. Calvin Klein's been pulling this bullshit for decades and, honestly, I'm just tired of it. Enough, already. Find a new tune to play, CK.


But they've managed to make a living, breathing human look inanimate, and I don't think that's a good thing.

We're so used to seeing this done to women! I guess doing it to a man makes a change.


That said, at least they didn't go for blackface. Could be worse!


yeah! ho! wah!

i agree that its not very sexy or sensual, but i dont think thats what they were going for. he looks almost inhuman, and im pretty sure its intentional. works for me.


Agreed. He is posed almost robotic, mechanical. Not human, not sensual. Which is unfortunate because he is so striking.


I think it loses appeal when all that grease serves to make him look like bronze instead of flesh.


Serenity Now

The guy is undeniably good looking but, I swear, just looking at all that grease made my cholesterol go up.

Ick.


i miss Sandhurst.


Why is the shiny man so angry at me?


I dunno...for me, it's a big, fat meh.

Perhaps CK is trying to communicate that in his suits, you can look like the model does without anything on. I do my share of hoping CK can make me look better than I really do. I am not alone.

But campaign ends up coming across as "look at the shiny man in the shiny suit!"


Someone needs to take away the ad designer's Photoshop filters.


quigley (the cat)

Ebony Chrome fabulous!

Forget the clothes (though the white shirt one is nice). Robert Mapplethorpe woulda rocked the hell out of the nudes.

QTC


I actually LOVE the effect on the skin that they did but I agree it made the suit pics a little awkward.


He has his hands on his pants in the first photo. How are those "carefully placed so as not to stain the clothing"? I agree his hand is awkward in the last photo but I seriously doubt CK is freaking over the clothes while they're liberally dousing the model in oil - there is no keeping that shit perfectly clean. These aren't the only CK suits in the world, and they're certainly not comparable to one-of-a-kind couture gowns or anything.


In those nudie shots, all the oil makes him look metallic... like a machine!


Overall I like it. I am not crazy about the blue suit photo and in general I think it would have worked better had this concept been used with a collection of clothes that were less shiny, still I think that the stiffness of the poses and the model's oiled body is an attempt at creating a sculptural android.


TLo said:

And in typical CK style, it's been slapped up on a billboard just to piss people off and get them talking. That trick's been working for 30 years.

Oh, so very true!


Does anyone else see the penis on his back?


formerlyAnon

Going with my first thoughts today:

It's taking the objectification of men to the point where this man literally looks like an object.

Which, as you pointed out is sculptural but not particularly sexy.

Ah well. CK did the soft focus soft porn look ads for a while. Now this.


He is gorgeous but I don't like the photo, he looks like a wax figure.


It's really annoying when nudity is used to sell clothing. Especially dirty nudity? The hands, like you said, are just so awkward. He looks like he's cradling an invisible baby in the blue-suit photo.


I think the whole point is for him to be overly smooth and shiny. He looks like plastic. In other words, he looks like a mannequin. I think it's an interesting concept.


the 'oily' look may be due to a bit of photoshopping. at least for the ones where he has a suit on, rather than the nude and wet-shirt shots. I wouldn't be too worried about the clothes being 'oily', as even the wet shirt looks more-so wet than soaked with any 'oils'.


When I first saw these pics, I thought the clothes were on a shiny mannequin and did a total double-take when I realized they weren't. I think it's pretty cool, and clearly it kept me looking at the pictures, so mission accomplished on their part.

I've seen a lot of comments about the model's hands, and I think it's pretty clear that his hands are positioned to make him look that much more like a mannequin. As for the the nude shots, I totally get it: well-oiled machine. I agree they're totally unnecessary, but I get it.


I saw the first photo and thought "Yeah! Sandhurst!" Then, the disappointment set in...


Because nothing says high fashion like...NO fashion?!


As a fashion it may not exude sexy, but boyfriend is all kinds of gorgeous.


Is it me, or are the majority of comments on all the posts people just regurgitating what you say...Popular opinion my ass, it's annoying.
What would the world be like if people actually thought for themselves?


I find this somewhat disturbing but that's why I like it. I don't think they were just going for sex in these photos, I think they were intentionally portraying him as robotic and futuristic. Maybe I'm reading too much into it, but it makes me think of the increasing plasticity of the fashion world and how our conceptions of beauty are shaped by new technologies, both in plastic surgery, and in robotics.

-E


I like it. It's not sexy, but it doesn't always have to be sexy. I like how he looks inhuman, almost robotic. They could've made him look sexy easily-obviously he's a gorgeous guy with a hot, hot body, but this different approach somehow works better for me. Maybe I'm crazy, but I've seen enough ripped (half)naked men supposedly selling a garment/accessory. This is sculptural, different. Me likes.


omgholyhotdamnthatmanisgorgeous!

as for the stiffness in the clothed shots, i think it was deliberate. as in - when he is nude (holyshitomghesbeautiful), hes more flexible & full of life & in motion. but when hes clothed, hes a a mannequin for the clothes. and the clothing itself is supposed to seem as vibrant as his bare skin.

or something equally douchey. i dont care, just send him to my house now please, thank you.


@Anonymous
2/1/10 6:55 PM
It's not just you. Watch... when their opinion changes, so does everyone else's to follow suit.


Hey anonymice 6:55 and 9:05, rather than ragging on everyone else's opinions, why don't you offer your own on the topic at hand?


I like shiny objects, so he works for me!


Ditto, the model looks like a plastic dummy. He's hot, but like a very shiny statue!


I'm late coming to this thread, but I just have to say I don't like the ad campaign. If they wanted the model to look like a mannequin or inanimate, then the model failed: there's too much in his eyes to miss that this is a living being.

This guy is gorgeous, but I just can't get beyond the unattractive, oily look. Messy and uncomfortable looking.

I can't believe Calvin Klein still sells clothes with these types of ads. It's so unimaginative...same old, same old.

Polly Glot


I sort of feel like if you make the choice to grease up the model, you have decided to wreck the clothes anyway -- the shot where there is grease all over the shirt is the best of the clothed shots, in my opinion.

Or, for freak's sake, photoshop out the greasy marks. It's not like these are pristine, unretouched photos.


He's a work of art.


I don't understand why black models are not used consistently. I find the exotic and unique bone structure of the face to be breathtakingly beautiful.

Really, designers are missing the boat (in my opinion) by using bland, boring blonds all the time. I am sick of the uninspiring, flat look of these models. Give me unusual and different and I'm a happy chick.


@Vickye - Yes I totally saw it too! Why are we the only ones seeing this? How do you miss a shiny black schlong?





BALMAIN for women

Blog Archive

Search This Blog

Loading...

Project Runway