Never-Before-Seen Photos of Lady Gaga by Terry Richardson

Gaga has been a busy lady of late. Along with converting the entire fifth floor of Barneys into a gagalicious retail fantasyland for her little monsters, today also marks the release of LADY GAGA X TERRY RICHARDSON, a meaty photography book documenting the 10-month period in which Richardson was granted an all-access pass to the pop star’s life, following her from Lollapalooza to the Grammy Awards and photographing everything from the most intimate moments to the most theatrical. Many of the 350-odd photos are exactly what you might expect — backstage ribaldry, performance pics, mug shots with other celebs — but some, like images of a tearful Gaga post-show, took us by surprise.

As Gaga writes in the book’s introduction, “There is no moment too strange, no angle unflattering, no circumstance relying on blind artifice, and never a time that I feel embarrassed or unsafe. Awakened in me is a perverse liberation, inspiring me to feel that is okay to view yourself as hyper-human. This is how Terry views me. I am so real, he says, that I am unreal.” Well, we won’t say we’ve seen a completely different side of the superstar, but we’ve definitely fleshed out our vision, real or unreal. Click through to see a sneak peek at some of our favorite never-before-seen photos of Lady Gaga from the book, and let us know if you’ll be rushing out to get your own copy in the comments!

Lady Gaga X Terry Richardson, used with permission by Grand Central Publishing, 2011. Photos: Terry Richardson.