Tom of Finland

Born 1920
Hometown Kaarina, Finland

Tom of Finland Gallery Art

Feature Inc., New York, NY

Galleria Espacio Minimo, Madrid, Spain

Schlechtriem Brothers, Berlin, Germany

Galerie Jean-Luc & Takako Richard, Paris, France

The Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY

Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, CA

Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, CA

Touko Laaksonen, aka "Tom of Finland" is widely regarded as one of the 20th century’s most influential artists for his revolutionary representation of the male figure. His drawings of fantastically muscled men engrossed in acts of homoerotic desire comprise one of the most inventive portrayals of the human body in modern times. These picture of gay men as virile, confident, and unashamed–equally radical for their near-illicit, underground distribution–originated an empowering queer iconography and liberating spirit that has marked popular culture, art, fashion, and human rights. Over a career that spanned nearly fifty years, he produced thousands of images beginning in the 1940s, robbing straight homophobic culture of its most virile and masculine archetypes; bikers, hoodlums, lumberjacks, cops, cowboys, and sailors, and recasting them–through deft skill and fantastic imagination–unapologetic, self-aware, and boastfully proud enthusiasts of gay sex.


Solo and two-person exhibitions devoted to the life and work of Tom of Finland have been presented at Postimuseu in Tampere, Finland, Los Angeles’ MOCA, Kulturhuset in Stockholm, and Artists Space in New York. His work has also been featured in group exhibitions at institutions such as Statens Museum for Kunst in Copenhagen, London's Institute of Contemporary Art, and Robert Rauschenberg Foundation in New York.


Courtesy of Henzel Studio

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