The Veruschka Questionnaire

by Eddie Roche

From today’s glorious Models Issue of The Daily! Model, actress, artist, countess—Veruschka is fashion’s original multi-hyphenate. Now in her seventies, the Berlin-based icon is still showing us how it’s done.

What’s a typical day in your life like now?
From my window, I watch the birds I feed every day. I drink a lot of tea, and talk to my cat. I work on my projects—sign petitions for human and animal rights—and go to demonstrations once in a while.

Do you consider yourself retired, or would you still do a campaign if asked?
I retired from modeling a long time ago. A campaign? Depends for what.

How did you get the name Veruschka?
I invented Veruschka—her name and her appearance.

What was your relationship with Diana Vreeland?
An intense, creative, and good one.

Do you consider yourself the first true supermodel?
I have never thought of myself as a true model or supermodel.

What are you most proud of in your career?
That Veruschka was a success.

Do you read fashion magazines today?
Only if I have to wait at the dentist.

Who was your favorite photographer to work with?
Richard Avedon.

Do you still follow fashion?
I have never followed fashion. I made my own fashion.

Thoughts on German fashion?
I like the designer Esther Perbandt.

How did being on the cover of Life change your life?
It did not change my life, but I still have that issue.

Do you go by your birth name these days?
For the fashion and movie worlds, I will always be Veruschka, and that’s okay. For the arts, I am Vera Lehndorff.

What kind of art do you make?
Drawing, painting, and performance…it’s not always for sale.

Among contemporary photographers, which ones would you like to work with?
Steven Meisel.

How do you want to be remembered?
Not as the first supermodel.

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