Mert Alas and Marcus Piggot/Exclusively for W
Rihanna’s rocked some pretty extreme styles in the past, but in the September issue of W magazine, she gets really wild, with animal skins, feathers, face paint, a septum piercing and more.
The cover of W showsthe singer wearing blue face paint, a nose ring and studs all down the length of her ear. In another photo in the magazine’s portfolio, Rihanna’s looking tribal, with feathered headdress, a Michael Kors fur coat, massive silver earrings, and even weirder face paint. In yet another, she’s sitting with two wolves in what appear to be a tent, wearing an Alexander McQueen fur cape, knee high boots, feathered jewelry, and yet another pattern of face paint.
An additional photo shows her apparently nude except for some animal skins, a fur headpiece, more face paint and an enormous necklace that appears to be an actual animal skull hanging off a gold choker. The entire portfolio makes the singer appear to be a member of some primitive, yet ultra-fashionable tribe, in a native setting.
“Rihanna came [to the shoot] with her own mental mood board, channeling the power of Grace Jones and the sophistication of Josephine Baker,” W editor-in-chief Stefano Tonchi says in a statement.
If you’re not familiar with the reference, Grace Jones is an androgynous-looking African-American singer and model who was popular in the ’80s. Lorde has cited her as one of her personal style icons. The late Josephine Baker was an American-born singer, dancer and actress who became a huge star in France in the twenties and thirties, and had a massive impact on the style of that era. She was the first African-American woman to star in a major motion picture.
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