George Platt LYNES, Tex Smutney and Buddy Stanley (standing) Enlarge 1 /1

George Platt LYNES

United States of America 1907 – 1955

Tex Smutney and Buddy Stanley (standing) (c.1941) Materials & Technique: photographs, gelatin silver photograph

Dimensions: 18.8 h x 22.6 w cm
Acknowledgement: Purchased 1981
Accession No: NGA 81.1557

Lynes maintained a very successful commercial practice as a fashion and celebrity photographer during the late 1930s and 1940s; he also photographed George Balanchine's American Ballet company. At the same time, Lynes had pursued making images of a more private nature which focused on the male nude. This work encompassed kitsch surrealism and theatrical views of men and women performing in the austere space of Lyne’s studio. Views of nude men engaged in physical interaction within the close confines of the artist’s studio, such as this image of gymnasts Charles Smutney and Charles Stanley, were remarkable for their erotic charge.

Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra