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Tom of Finland: Life and Work of a Gay Hero Paperback – 11 Jul 2013


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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: BRUNO GMUNDER VERLAG (11 July 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 3867875928
  • ISBN-13: 978-3867875929
  • Product Dimensions: 1.9 x 21.6 x 27.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 386,451 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By schumann_bg TOP 50 REVIEWER on 11 Jun. 2014
Format: Hardcover
This is a superb biographical volume on Tom of Finland, and thoroughly deserved. F. Valentine Hooven, also known as comic artist Valentine and excellent in his own right, has written a substantial account of Tom's life that is clearly the result of thorough research, yet reads in a way that is hard to put down. His experience of the Second World War in the Finnish army follows an evocative description of his early life, complete with the kind of photos you don't normally see in books about him: family groups, vacations in the Finnish countryside, school graduation etc. It is printed on thick paper and very well laid out. Tom's own comments on different aspects of his life are printed in larger blue text, creating a very appealing visual blend with the reproductions of his graphics, magazine covers, photos he used etc. He had a 28-year relationship with a man 12 years his junior, Veli, and in later life spent long periods of time in LA where he was welcomed into a whole leather fraternity and had great success, being friends with Etienne, among others.

His was a life full of colour and interest, which has given us a legacy of fantastic drawings. He also had a great political meaning, overturning the homophobic attributing of effeminacy - meaning 'weakness' - as the definition of what it was to be gay; he probably did more to counter this than anyone else, by drawing his sexual fantasies and following his own star. There is a great example in this! - and he is certainly a hero for gay rights. It is salutary to see Finland acknowledging his importance with a series of postage stamps that have been released over the last couple of months. I imagine Taschen publishers must also have helped immeasurably in bringing wider acceptability for an artist who must surely be regarded alongside Finland's most remarkable figures like Sibelius, and enhancing many people's lives with his thrilling imaginative appeal.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By john pearsall on 30 Jan. 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Tom of Finland great book intresting info plus great art work well worth the money and great to support the tof .
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 6 reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
OMG, Jesus Christ (not to offend) I LOVE THIS BOOK 1 Nov. 2013
By Mr Bear - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I'm kinda a Tom of Finland freak. I collect Tom of Finland pictures, books & so on. I've never seen a book, however, that reproduces Tom's drawing in such a clear, precise way. Nothing fuzzy. I think they actually used actual art to develop this book. BUY IT! BUY IT! BUY IT! BUY IT! BUY IT! BUY IT! BUY IT! BUY IT! BUY IT! BUY IT! BUY IT! BUY IT! BUY IT! BUY IT! BUY IT!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Becoming and Remaining an Icon 1 Dec. 2012
By Grady Harp - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Tuoko Laaksonen (1920 - 1991) may have enjoyed worldwide fame as Tom of Finland during his lifetime, his fame due largely to an extensive following of those who praised his courage to paint and draw what he wanted to paint and draw rather than keeping his talent for figurative work in the dark corners of only certain bookstores. Now he can now be seen as an exceptionally gifted draughtsman and artist. His favorite subjects were the rough manly men of his native Finland, as Touko knew from an early age that men interested him more than women. His talents were further honed by art study in Helsinki. He found success in the Finnish advertising industry but secretly continued creating his increasingly erotic drawings of hyper-masculine men. In 1957 he submitted some drawings to the American magazine Physique Pictorial and the "Tom of Finland" legend was born. By the late '60s Tom's "dirty drawings" became the standard for gay art, and Tom's Men a template for a new gay masculinity. Tom's art continues to play an important role in promoting self-confidence, positive self-image and openness in the gay community.

TOM OF FINLAND: LIFE AND WORK OF A GAY HERO by F. Valentine Hooven III is a powerful statement about this always controversial an now completely respected artist. "My whole life long I have done nothing but interpret my dreams of ultimate masculinity, and draw them."--Tom of Finland

He's the first name in erotic gay art. Tom of Finland's painstaking, perfect pencil drawings of macho, muscular men--big in every way that counts--influenced gay culture around the globe. As playful as they are sexual, as cheeky as they are fetishistic, Tom of Finland's works celebrate gay archetypes like construction workers and cops, soldiers and sailors, lumberjacks and leathermen, bikers and badasses.

With an extensive biography, eye-opening photos and an authoritative collection of drawings, Tom of Finland: Life and Work of a Gay Hero by F. Valentine Hooven III brings this brilliant body of work to life. Grady Harp, December 12
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
well done! 10 Aug. 2012
By dima - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I've just looked through a copy of this book and I am really excited. The book contains not only well known Tom's drawings, but also a lot of interesting facts and details. Actually it is a mix of text and pictures. A story about Tom of Finland. Not boring at all.
Tom of Finland--------Some of His Best 16 Oct. 2013
By Glenn Younger - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Thee book was what I was expecting and I was very pleased. Obviously you have to be a fan of this sort of thing. If you are-----you will not be disappointed.
History of a gay artist 2 Jun. 2014
By Thomas Moore - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you're a Tom of Finland fan (or have a thing for muscle men) this is a fascinating read about the artist who set the bar for gay erotic art.
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