Allen Ginsberg: A Lifetime Briefly in Images

Continuing our birthday celebration into the weekend, here’s a random smattering of images of Allen throughout his lifetime from our collection. Starting off with an early photo-booth shot of Allen and his brother Eugene, whose birthday we should mention is tomorrow. Born five years and two days apart, they often spent their birthdays together. Eugene, a poet as well (some even say the better poet!), is seen below, not long after returning from WWII where he served in a radar unit in France and Germany and was then discharged not long after the photo was taken.

Allen Ginsberg, and brother Eugene Brooks (in uniform), Photobooth, 1944. c. Allen Ginsberg Estate

Allen Ginsberg, East Side Highshool, Paterson, NJ 1942. c. Allen Ginsberg Estate

Allen Ginsberg, self portrait in AP darkroom, 1949. Used for cover of Gates of Wrath. c. Allen Ginsberg Estate

Allen Ginsberg, Russell Durgin, Leo Natonson. Allen’s return to Columbia, 1948. Photo: c. Bill Fraenkel

Leroi Jones (Amiri Baraka), Allen Ginsberg, John Fles, NYC 1959. Camera in Peter Orlovsky’s hand. c. Allen Ginsberg Estate.

Allen Ginsberg, Irving Rosenthal (once Chicago Review editor & founder of Big Table) Peter Orlovsky, 1959. courtesy Allen Ginsberg Collection

Clockwise: Gregory Corso, Allen Ginsberg, Peter Orlovsky, Paul Carrol, Chicago at time of Big Table reading, January 1959. c. Allen Ginsberg Estate

Allen & Peter aboard the SS America bound for Cherbourg from NYC, March 1961. They would go to Paris, Tangier and ultimately India on this trip, not returning to the US till 1963. Photo: Courtesy Allen Ginsberg Collection

Allen bidding Peter farewell in Tangier. It was unclear when, where or even if they’d see eachother again. They would eventually meet up in Tel Aviv later that year. July 1963. c. Allen Ginsberg Estate.

Allen Ginsberg, Kyoto, July 1963. Photo snapped by Gary Snyder. Courtesy Allen Ginsberg Collection.

Allen Ginsberg, photobooth shot, San Francisco, August, 1963. c. Allen Ginsberg Estate

Miguel Grinberg and Allen in Cuba not long before Allen was deported to Czechoslovakia, January 1965. Photo courtesy Allen Ginsberg Collection

Allen in Red Square, Moscow, March 1965. c. Allen Ginsberg Estate

Allen Ginsberg, Hotel Ambassador, Prague, early March 1965. Courtesy Allen Ginsberg Collection

Allen Ginsberg at the Jewish Cemetery, Prague, March 1965.- Photograph by Charles Wiener – Courtesy, Allen Ginsberg Collection

Peter Orlovsky, Tamiya Naoi & Allen Ginsberg, New York, August 1965. Courtesy Allen Ginsberg Collection.

Allen Ginsberg & Friend, photobooth, 1968. c. Allen Ginsberg Estate

Allen Ginsberg, 1968. Courtesy Allen Ginsberg Collection

Herbert Huncke and Allen Ginsberg, East 10th St, NYC 1970. Photo. c. Anne Charters

Clockwise: Julien Beck, Phil Ochs, Hugh Romney (Wavy Gravy), guitarist Catholic worker friend, Steve Ben-Israel, Allen Ginsberg, Judith Malina, Peter Orlovsky. NYC Be-In April 1973. Courtesy Allen Ginsberg Collection

John Cage, Allen Ginsberg, Nam June Paik and Merce Cunningham, for the broadcast of Good Morning Mr Orwell, New York City, New Years Eve 1983. Photo c. Hank O’Neal

Allen Ginsberg at his Union Sq Office, New York City, 1994. Photo c. Gordon Ball


  1. Great rare images – could this possibly mean that we'll see more of Allen's photographs published? I have the Twelvetrees Press "Photographs" book and the recent "Beat Memories" exhibit book – of which most of the photos in "Memories" were already shown in the "Photographs" book. Let's get more of Allen's photographs published!

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