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Arts CNN 2010 May

No nudes please, we’re Asian: Leslie Kee tests Tokyo’s photographic ideals

by Robert Michael Poole

Getting time to sit down with celebrity photographer Leslie Kee during his utterly hectic schedule to speak in detail about his career was the easy part: getting him to stop speaking requires a trickier sleight of hand.

The Singapore-born and Tokyo-based Kee has a thick resume, photographing such uber-celebs as Ayumi Hamasaki, Zhang Ziyi, Kumi Koda, Choi Ho Jin and Beyonce among countless others for magazines, books, posters and commercials. Recently, his proclivity for taking photos of subjects unclothed and au naturale has sent shock waves through conservative Asia, but Kee sees it as a revelation and hopefully a revolution in an entertainment and fashion industry that lacks aesthetic diversity.