Isa Leshko's Portraits of Aging Animals

Philadelphia-based photographic artist Isa Leshko turned her camera onto aging farm animals, horses and dogs to create a powerful study of mortality and aging. The body of work, captured with medium format film, is currently exhibited at the Corden Potts gallery in San Francisco and was inspired by the caregiving process she underwent with her parents.

The Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University interviewed Leshko in the fall of 2012 soon after the project was completed. The work has received attention from National Public Radio, Harper's Magazine and and will be exhibited next month as part of the Richard Levy Gallery's Miami Project.



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Thanks for sharing my work with your readers. This project is still not finished. I'm still creating new work with the goal of publishing these images in book-form one day. Thanks again!

Isa this work is amazing. It's definitely something I'd grab when it's published. I don't say this often, but it inspired me to go out and shoot a project I've been sitting on this weekend.

Thanks so much, @CRAYONSEED:disqus. Happy shooting!

Joseph Gamble's picture

Looking forward to seeing where the work takes you. Very powerful work. Wish you the best with taking it into book form.

Greg Tennyson's picture

A lot of the end-of-life photographs I've seen seem to exploiting the subject or try to make me pity them. It's good to see someone photograph something difficult and do it well. You've done a great job of honoring these animals, kudos.

What a great project. Very well done and the images look amazing. Great job!

Can anyone enlighten me on what camera system she's using (body, film type and lens) I'm watching on mobile so I can't tell exactly.

hasselblad and ilford hp5 film

Thanks Brandon!

Noticed it now that I'm on desktop. Love that look and think it's fitting for the subject.

well made me tear up. this is an incredibly powerful project, I can't even begin to describe how well done it is.

Wow Isa...just wow...great work. You have also inspired me to start working on a project.

A moving and touching project. I wish that I had taken more pictures of our beagles. One of ours, Becky, was tough as nails. She believed in daily exercise; younger, she would run along the fence line; after she could no longer run, she would walk the fence line. At her end, we took her to the vet and we decided to put her down that Saturday. She passed away that Friday night. She was two months away from turning 18.

Isa Leshko project was featured on PetaPixel December 6, 2011:

Beautiful work. I have an extremely old pet rabbit, whom I love very much. He is 15 years old, blind deaf, crippled, but still happy to be fed and petted. Older pets can teach us much about life...

Beautiful. What a kind-hearted tribute to these amazing animals. Thank you.

great project amazing photos.

As an art therapy major, this is an amazing opportunity of healing through art. Showing the beauty and the reality of aging through animals.