“We don’t put ourselves in the sex-symbol category,” deadpans Robert Duffy.
Now, fashion fans, pinup connoisseurs and the generally curious can judge for themselves, guided by a substantial piece of hard evidence: a giant nude photograph of Duffy and Marc Jacobs, their largest organs on full display. A 6-foot-tall print, shot by Brian Bowen Smith, will be on view at the Gramercy Park Hotel on Monday. Other photos feature more commonly acknowledged sex symbols — Julianne Moore, Christy Turlington, Naomi Campbell, Hilary Swank, Dita Von Teese, Selma Blair, Carolyn Murphy, Winona Ryder, Brandon Boyd, Rufus Wainwright — as well as a group of effervescent male employees, all to be auctioned off at Jacobs’ post-show party. (At press time, Kate Moss had also agreed to pose.) In addition, $20 Ts — each celeb gets his or her own color — will be available at the party and for a limited run at all Marc Jacobs stores.
The point: to raise money and awareness, and perhaps an eyebrow or two, for the New York University School of Medicine Interdisciplinary Melanoma Cooperative Group. As for those “largest organs”? The skin, silly.
“Around the time of the show, we like to use the opportunity to not only celebrate those who worked so hard but also to raise money for our charity,” says Jacobs. “This is the one Robert decided to support.”
Duffy, who spent his high school summers bronzed on the beach, was diagnosed with melanoma four years ago. He designed this project in light of that experience and to honor his recently deceased friend, Jessie Rubin M.D., a dermatologist at the NYU center. “I quit doing drugs years ago. I’ve always had safe sex since we’ve known about AIDS,” he says. “No one should die of a suntan.”
The plan for the benefit came together this summer, after Duffy ran into Murphy aglow with a perfect tan but learned it was out of an Estée Lauder bottle. “She was so tan and gorgeous, and her skin is flawless,” he says. “Obviously, if it’s from the sun, at some point she’s not going to look like that.” Nudity seemed the logical route. “It’s like, what else are you going to do for skin cancer, have everyone wearing Prada?”Duffy then set out to enlist his and Jacobs’ well-known friends to trade in their modesty for charity. Ryder, who has never appeared nude in print or on screen, agreed with a caveat: “If I have to [strip], you have to,” she told him. Until then, Duffy says, “It didn’t even cross my mind that somebody my age — 52 — and my size should ever pose nude.” The other subjects agreed soon after, with the originally hesitant Swank a late addition. “I wore her down,” says Duffy.
Of course, a modicum of censorship is involved, in the form of strategically placed slogans. The women’s tag line reads, “Protect the skin you’re in,” and the men’s, “Protect your largest organ.” Admittedly, a little vanity also surfaced. Thanks to Photoshop, the finished prints are missing a wrinkle here, an under-eye circle there. “I definitely had the most work done out of everyone,” says Duffy. “But Marc looks fantastic. He weighs 130 pounds.”
“No,” corrects the newly svelte Jacobs, “I weigh 135 pounds.” But that extra five aside, he was an easy sell. “Robert asked me, and I said OK,” he says. “I’m pretty OK with the way I look. Sometimes. On the right day.”
My character, Dinah Madani, is just the coolest, [most] badass woman imaginable," says @amberroserevah. The actress stars in @marvel's newest series on @netflix, @thepunisher. To prepare for her role, Revah sat down with Homeland agents to get a real sense of with Dinah's day-to-day life is really like. Read our full interview on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
A scene from the 91st annual @macys Thanksgiving Day Parade. The parade, which boasts 50 million TV viewers and 3.5 million on-site spectators, is considered one of the largest and most watched parades in the world. (📷: Jason Szenes/EPA-REX)
The circus came to @bloomingdales 59th Street on Tuesday night and lit up Lexington Avenue with acrobatic dancers, death-defying knife throwing, sword swallowing and aerial acts with no net. The 45 minutes of theatrics built up to unveiling the holiday windows depicting @swarovski crystal-encrusted circus pieces and scenes from “The Greatest Showman” – songs from the soundtrack included. See the rest of the photos on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: Joshua Scott)
The psychedelic fashion that pervaded the ’60s is back with an exhibit at the @museumofcityny. “Mode New York: Fashion Takes a Trip” chronicles the changing styles from 1960 through 1973 and features designers such as @ysl, @oscardelarenta and more. The exhibition, which is on display through April 1, is organized into four periods: First Lady Fasion, Youthquake, New Bohemia and New Nonchalance. Pictured here is model Pat Bardonella during the Garvey Day Parade in 1968. (📷: @kwamebphoto) #wwdeye #wwdfashion
“People should be a lot more honest in expressing both the dark and light of themselves. We need to give each other the space to do that because it’s the only way we can grow and evolve,” says @noelwells of her new film “Mr. Roosevelt,” which is largely based on her own struggles. Unexpectedly leaving @nbcsnl in 2014 after just one season, Wells felt set back in her self-esteem and career trajectory. She quickly refocused her energy to more personal projects, which led to the completion of “Mr. Roosevelt.” Read the rest of WWD’s interview with the “Master of None” actress on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
@barbrastreisand is giving fans a chance to see her perform up close in a new concert series, which makes its debut on @Netflix today. From behind-the-scenes takes to her concert performance in Miami last December, the two-hour streaming special captures Streisand in her element. Pictured here is the singer/actress photographed for WWD in 1963. (📷: Palmieri Tony) #wwdeye #wwdarchive
@chanel and @pharrell dropped what’s being dubbed as the world’s most exclusive sneakers yesterday. The Adidas Originals NMD Hu, which Williams designed in collaboration with Chanel and @adidasoriginals, has a waiting list of over 120K people who pre-registered online at chanelatcolette.fr –– and only 500 pairs are on sale. The singer predicted the resale value of the shoes could reach $40K. Read the full interview on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdfashion (📷: Dominique Maître)
@imanshumpert is diving deeper into his creative endeavors and relaunching his clothing line, Post 90s, and is helping to raise money for the hurricane victims in St. Maarten with a jersey he’s designed with his brother. The Cleveland Cavaliers player talked to WWD about kneeling during the national anthem, working with fashion brands and how he wants to be more than an @nba player. Read the interview on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: George Chinese)