Monday, 7 March 2016

Bar Refaeli Takes a Roll in the Hay for Agent Provocateur

A campaign image
The cover of the last issue of Next magazine

Graydon Carter

Si by Giorgio Armani
The latest Agent Provocateur marketing campaign breaks this week featuring Bar Refaeli as a barn girl reclining seductively on piles of hay — and not looking like she rose at dawn to milk the cows.
Shot by Sebastian Faena in the countryside outside Paris, the campaign is meant to conjure a hot summer mood and a love of the great outdoors.

Inspired by films including “Paris Texas,” “Stealing Beauty,” “The Virgin Suicides” and “Last Tango in Paris,” it is also the brand’s first campaign shot on location outside.

According to creative director Sarah Shotton, the team was expecting sunny weather but got cloudy skies, rain and cold instead.

“There we were in our North Face puffer jackets, hoping for some sun,” said Shotton, adding that Refaeli, instead, was in AP underwear.

“Thank God for Bar — she was a really good sport, waiting in the stables until the sun came out. And she is really hot — you can’t look like that and feel the cold.”

Shotton added that she chose the model for her “film noir, feline quality,” and for the synergy she had with the collection and Agent Provocateur.

Refaeli wears some of the key looks of the spring season, including a black, high-cut bodysuit in stretch chiffon with a built-in bra and suspenders, and a cropped camisole top with inner support, and miniskirt that can be worn as lingerie, pajamas or clothing.

Shotton said she’s seeing a trend for women wanting their lingerie to multitask and to have a sporty element, too. “They also want to show off our lingerie and are looking for something that is out of the ordinary.”
The campaign will be used online, in-store and at AP points of sale.

The British company is on a growth trajectory, with sales in the year ended March 29 up 36.2 percent to 53.1 million pounds, or $86.6 million, while earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, or EBITDA, rose by more than 50 percent to 9.6 million pounds, or $15.6 million.

Online sales were up 30 percent year-on-year, and international brick-and-mortar expansion continues to be a major focus.

Over the past seven years, Agent has expanded its offer to include a lower-priced line called L’Agent, which is designed by Penelope Cruz and her sister Mónica Cruz Sánchez.

The brand also has five fragrances with partners InterParfums.

Bar Refaeli probed for tax fraud, must get permission to leave the country

Gag order lifted on case of supermodel, who was questioned for 12 hours Wednesday; authorities allege she falsely claimed not to live in Israel, failed to report ‘tens of millions of shekels’ in benefitsIsraeli supermodel Bar Refaeli in Cannes in 2011. (Shutterstock)

Israeli supermodel Bar Refaeli in Cannes in 2011. (Shutterstock)

Israeli supermodel Bar Refaeli is being investigated for potential tax offenses, including allegedly trying to avoid tax by falsely claiming not to be living in Israel, Hebrew-language media reported on Thursday. The reports came after the lifting of a Wednesday gag order that had sent gossip-mongers into overdrive. 

Refaeli, who spent 12 hours in questioning at the Tax Authority offices in Tel Aviv on Wednesday, was initially said to be suspected of failing to report over NIS 1 million (some $250,000) in celebrity benefits. Later Thursday, however, reports said the allegations concerned “tens of millions” of shekels. She also allegedly sought to avoid tax by falsely claiming not to be living in Israel. 

Refaeli, who denies any criminal offense, has been required to get the authorities’ permission if she wishes to leave the country.

Refaeli is suspected of not reporting that she had someone else pay her rent at an apartment at the luxury W high-rises in Tel Aviv; underpaying an interior designer in exchange for helping him with advertising; and receiving a free car from a company, also in exchange for help with advertising, according to news site Ynet.

Refaeli’s mother was also reported to be involved in the case.

The model, whose scads of campaigns for various companies has made her one of Israel’s most recognizable faces on the world stage, is also a mainstay of celebrity websites and gossip rags in Israel and the US.

But her career and jet-setting lifestyle may be cramped by the investigation.

The Tel Aviv Magistrate’s Court determined Thursday that Refaeli can leave Israel only in coordination with authorities and after depositing a sum of NIS 250,000. A third party would also have to put up a guarantee of NIS 500,000, Ynet reported.

Earlier Thursday, while the supermodel’s name was still under gag order, some Hebrew-language news sites tried to circumvent it by providing hints for observant readers.

An article on news site Bizportal, captured and posted on Facebook, featured a top-down acrostic of Refaeli’s name in Hebrew.

News site Walla, while not giving Refaeli’s name in its article, nevertheless tagged the supermodel in publishing the piece.

Giora Aderet, Refaeli’s attorney, denied the suspicions against the supermodel and her mother.

“There is no drama. In the end, this is just a civil dispute. No one cheated anyone else. It will all clear up soon,” Aderet told the NRG news site.
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