Back in November I posted this entry about discovering some vintage photos on the net of a spectacularly handsome man called Tony Sansone. Sansone was an early devotee of the physical culture movement of the 20s and 30s, dancer, body sculptor and one of the earliest physique superstars.
So, I'm browsing in my favourite secondhand bookstore the other day... $35 store credit severely burning a hole in my pocket... when I found something I didn't even know existed. The Holy Grail.
A whole book about Tony Sansone, "American Adonis". Oh you can believe there was a small squeal. Mmmm hmmmm.
I'm not sure whether Sansone was particularly daring, or whether attitudes to artistic nudes were different then, or maybe it's because many of the photos were created as physique studies for artists (and some randy men), but pretty much the entire book is frontal nudes.
Not that there's anything wrong with that.
Sansone posed for a number of sculptors, and in the days well before Mystic Tan perfected a two step process of applying a bronze brown pigment to his body and then a layer of oil over the top, giving him a glorious sheen like a living statue. My favourites are some of the earliest photos, with the soft sepia photography and the stylised art deco inspired poses.