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Nina Leen – Life Photographer Who Dressed the Squirrel

  • Nina Leene died on Jan 1, 1995. (New Yorker – the Surreal World of Nina Leen)

    Nobody knows how old the Russian-born photographer Nina Leen was when she died, in 1995. Judging from her obituary, information about Leen is scarce. She lived in Germany, Italy, and Switzerland before moving to the U.S., where she became one of Life magazine’s first female photographers, in the nineteen-forties. She shot countless assignments for the magazine, including more than fifty cover stories, and produced fifteen photo books. Her most well-known subjects were animals (including her dog Lucky), American women and adolescents, and the Irascibles, a group of abstract artists, including Willem de Kooning, Jackson Pollock, and Mark Rothko.


    Nina Leen bio with a photo of the Irascibles here .

  • A squirrel wearing a baby doll’s dress.


    The Nutty Squirrel that dressed in drag.


  • (Jacky with baby Caroline)

  • Nina Leen’s portrait by Gordon Parks.

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