Tom of Finland, born Touko Laaksonen in Finland in 1920, ignited a cultural movement with his iconic homoerotic art, which premiered in the Spring 1957 issue of the groundbreaking American all-male magazine, Physique Pictorial. He is considered and respected as one of the most influential artists of the 20th century, with works part of permanent collections in museums around the world. His signature black-and-grey technique is instantly recognizable and remains a key component of popular culture.
His body of work includes over 4,500 works of art, mostly featuring men with exaggerated sexual traits, such as square jaws, bulging muscles, while wearing tight or scant clothing and positioned in a variety of hyper-masculine scenarios.
Tom of Finland is an important part of art history and pop culture because of his forward-thinking depiction of homosexuality. Tom's raw and honest art depicted homosexuality with an unabashed and confident air.