George Clooney is spot-on as W Magazine’s December/January 13.14 cover boy photographed by the prolific fashion photographer Emma Summerton, styling for the shoot is courtesy of Michael Kucmeroski. While in charge of the set design was Thomas Thurnauer.
What cultural icons have mattered most to you?
I grew up Catholic, and there were always religious icons that I’d see in church. The cross and the altar were big parts of my life. But when I was 10 years old, my father took me to the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. I remember walking up those stairs and looking at this carved piece of marble that had nothing to do with a carved piece of marble. That statue said something to me about us as a society. In The Monuments Men, we question whether saving art is worth a life, and I would argue that the culture of a people represents life. When the Taliban destroy incredible pieces of architecture and art, or when American troops don’t protect museums in Iraq, you are seeing people losing their culture. And with the end of a country’s culture goes its identity. It’s a terrible loss, down to your bones.