Hugh Hefner is a role model. And, that is a statement, not a question. After being denied a five dollar raise at Esquire Magazine, the original Playboy took his pride and left for greener pastures. He raised $8,000 from investors (including his mother whom according to Hef, believed in her son, not the venture) leased out his furniture, and launched Playboy in 1953. Since then, the magazine had grown into an empire of its own that is built on a deeper foundation than just sex, contrary to popular belief. While it is easier to associate Playboy with its notorious and attractive centerfold girls, the publication is actually known for in-depth, prominent features with interviews of iconic personalities such as Martin Luther King, John Lennon, Richard Nixon and Roman Polanski.
To fully delve into the life of Hef, TASCHEN decided simply one volume would not be sufficient to do the man justice. After all, for a man who has legitimized the robe as appropriate public attire for himself, the tribute should run a little deeper than that. Thus, Hef’s biography takes on a hefty illustrated form of six sumptuous volumes documenting both the man’s life and the first 25 years of Playboy. The anthology holds never-seen-before artwork, correspondence and 700 pages of personal text. For those who are fans of the publication which has not only changed the landscape of publishing but also the entertainment industry (which other mansion will ever top the Playboy mansion?), the tome is limited to 1,500 sets and each is individually autographed by Hef himself. Other than the usual visual delights, the pack also comes with a piece of Hef’s legendary silk pajamas. The illustrated biography is now available for order online via: TASCHEN.