Anja Rubik Interview & Preview of Her Erotica Magazine, '25'
We spoke with the model at Cannes about her magazine, feeling sexy, and whether she wore knickers with that infamous Met dress.
Anja Rubik re-launched her bi-annual magazine 25 in Cannes on Wednesday night at the Pierre Cardin Palais Bulles — a private villa that looks like the set of Star Wars meets Boogie Nights, with an awesome view. The magazine, which celebrates sex (from her Ed’s letter: “We aren’t trying to reinvent the wheel, just make it more lubricated for an easier ride”) nudity and women, is a beautifully bound book with incredible photography. Of course it obviously helps that Anja is BFFs with most of the talent — the likes of Abbey Lee, Arizona Muse, Liya Kebede and Cocho Rocha all grace the pages, naked — but it actually makes for a good read as well.
I took some iPhone photos of the magazine and spoke with Anja about the concept behind the magazine, when she feels her sexiest, and her decision not to wear knickers to the Met Ball.
Alice Cavanagh: So is this a relaunch? Because you’ve worked on 25 before, right?
Anja Rubik: I’ve done 25 before but it was owned by a different person, so I have taken it over and changed the whole concept.
How long have you been working on this issue for?
I’ve been working on it for a year and a half — working on the concept and getting the team together. With my busy schedule, though, it is hard to find the time.
Tell me about the main concept behind the magazine.
I love this magazine from the late 60s, early 70s, called Viva, which was a Penthouse publication for women. It was very erotic, very sensual and I was looking through it and thinking, “What happened to erotica?” because, now, the whole idea of erotic sensuality has disappeared and the approach to sex and nudity is very awkward — either it is really ‘cool’ or really trashy. So we decided to bring the idea of erotica in the 70s back to life. I also wanted the magazine to be about very ambitious, very strong women and so I started looking at people in my field — especially the photographers who are so incredible — but I started thinking that there are so few female photographers; so I worked with many female photographers. And the issue is about very strong women, very ambitious; she does what she wants and she is comfortable with her sexuality.
Is that how you would describe yourself?
When do you feel sexiest?
With my husband — he makes me feel sexy. But to be honest to have a project come true that certainly gives me confidence which makes me feel sexy. Sexiness is a lot to with being comfortable with yourself.
Can we talk about that dress you wore to the Met ball? That was certainly very sexy.
Yes, that was my friend Anthony [Vaccarello] who designed it. I love that dress.
Can I ask: were you wearing knickers?
Well it was a bodysuit attached, but no one knew.
So how often are you going to do the magazine?
The print is twice a year. We will have small prints in between, and videos and a lot of collaborations with artists. There are also going to be products behind it, so it’s not only a magazine it’s more like a ‘vision’.
I know you don’t have any advertising in this issue but will you eventually have advertising?
We’re still debating about that. We have a different idea about how to get revenue and make this project run, so hopefully that works out… we’ll see.
Cool. And it’s only available at Colette at the moment?
No, it will also probably be available at Selfridges and somewhere in New York.