A decade later, when Leibovitz was commissioned as a rising photographer to capture Lennon, Wenner asked her to photograph him in a way that recalled the Two Virgins photograph, but without Ono. The new shoot would also commemorate the 10th anniversary of the men’s major interview.
But when Leibovitz arrived at the Dakota to photograph Lennon, he refused to be photographed without his wife—and history was made. While Lennon stripped, as he had in the original shoot, Ono wanted to keep her clothes on. The decision contributed to the picture’s strangeness, and the self-possession that Ono radiates in photograph.
Despite its place in the pop culture pantheon, Leibovitz’s photograph remains a simple, startlingly intimate shot of a couple in love. According
to Leibovitz, when Lennon saw the Polaroid, he said to her: “This is it. This is our relationship.”