ITS sensual nude centrefolds made it one of the most famous magazines in the world, with Marilyn Monroe appearing on the front of the first edition.
Now more than 60 years after Playboy was launched, a city-born artist has added a unique sparkle to some of its most iconic cover designs.
Simon Claridge, 35, was granted access to the magazine’s archives, which hold every cover printed since the first issue in 1953. And he has chosen six images dating from 1967 to 1982 to appear in the collection, each one embellished with Simon’s signature “diamond dust” finish.
The technique ensures that no two people will view the art in the same way as light shimmers on the shiny particles.
Simon, who considers Edinburgh his spiritual home, said: “Whittling them down from 700 covers wasn’t easy but I have had more difficult days at work. The covers I have picked are sensual rather than sexual. My personal favourite is November 1967, which features a woman in a white dress. It is a gorgeous piece of design.”
The new collection was unveiled at a VIP launch event at the Playboy Club in London yesterday and is available to buy at Castle Fine Art galleries across the UK, including on Multrees Walk.
Whittling them down from 700 covers wasn’t easy but I have had more difficult days at work.Simon Claridge
Prices start at almost £1000. The collaboration was sparked by Simon’s interest in Marilyn Monroe, who had featured in some of his earlier work.
Simon said: “I kept seeing this image of her on Playboy’s first edition again and again. That was the germ of the idea.”
While some would say Playboy is an outdated and sexist magazine, Simon feels the publication “celebrates” women.
“Playboy represents so many firsts. It’s progressive, revolutionary. I cannot emphasise enough its influence.”