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October 17, 2011  | by: Ama Kwarteng

Nicki Minaj on the Cover of W

After the release of model Sui He’s cover (art directed by Chinese artist Ai Weiwei), W released a second cover that features Nicki Minaj.  Both covers are part of the 6th Annual W Magazine Art and Fashion November issue.

Both the cover and the spread show Minaj in many different classical portraits that were re-created by Francesco Vezzoli, an Italian artist, and styled by Edward Enniful. For the shoot, Minaj is seen wearing a number of couture gowns, including pieces by Dior Haute Couture, Vera Wang and Western Costume Company.

The Nicki Minaj Cover

The 28 year old hip hop star was transformed into the Marquise de ­Montespan, Comtesse du Barry, Madame de Pompadour, and ­Madame Rimsky-­Korsakov.

When asked about his vision for Minaj, Vezzoli said:

“My idea was to reproduce four iconic portraits of some of the most fascinating females of the past in a series starring an American pop-culture role model. We tried to re-create those original portraits using similar furniture, props, and clothing, à la Visconti. Luckily enough, the result came out as surreal as it could be, just as I wished.”

The editorials featured in the magazine are stunning and elegant. They highlight Minaj’s natural beauty, which is sometimes lost among all of her crazy outfits and makeup.

The view the editorial pictures click here, and you can read Vezzoli’s full interview here.

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