elisa_rolle (elisa_rolle) wrote,
elisa_rolle
elisa_rolle

Tom Bianchi, Mark Prunty & Ben

Tom Bianchi (born 1945 in Oak Park, Illinois) is an American writer and photographer who specializes in male nude photography. A lawyer by training, he is currently a vice president of CytoDyn, a biotech firm engaged in HIV therapy development. For many years, he lived (and worked) with his life partner, Mark Prunty (born 1965), a computer graphics designer, in Los Angeles, California. They met in 1991 at a book signing party for Bianchi. Two years earlier, Bianchi had buried the man with whom he'd had a long-term monogamous relationship that predated safe sex. Back in circulation, and HIV-positive himself, he thought, "I'm an outcast and nobody will ever touch me again." But Prunty didn't consider him a leper: "I didn't know anybody who had died of AIDS. Of course, I knew it was a death sentence. But it wasn't an issue and I don't know why." Before they met, Bianchi had been severely depressed. Thinking his time was short, he wanted to do something meaningful for his community. Publication of his first of six books, 1990's "Out of the Studio," a photo study of gay relationships, gave him "renewed energy and purpose." Since 2012 he is living with his current partner, Ben, in Palm Springs.

His nineteen books of photographs, poems, and essays primarily cover the gay male experience.

In 1990, St. Martins Press published Out of the Studio, Bianchi’s book of male nudes, frankly gay and affectionally connected. Thereafter, nineteen of Bianchi’s books have been published, three documentary films about Bianchi’s work have been distributed, and Biachi’s work has been published in more than thirty anthologies on the male nude. His On the Couch series, Deep Sex and Erotic Triggers deal with the expression of conscious sexual energy.


Tom Bianchi is an American writer and photographer who specializes in male nude photography. For many years, he lived (and worked) with his life partner, Mark Prunty, a computer graphics designer, in LA, California. They met in 1991 at a book signing party for Bianchi. Bianchi wanted to do something meaningful for his community: "Out of the Studio," a photo study of gay relationships, gave him "renewed energy and purpose." Since 2012 he is living with his current partner, Ben, in Palm Springs.



















Bianchi was born and raised in the suburbs of Chicago. He got a law degree at Northwestern and practiced corporate law for ten years. At thirty -four he left his position as Senior Counsel at Columbia Pictures, tore up his law degree, pasted it into a painting and had his first one man show with Betty Parsons and Carol Dreyfuss in New York. Shortly thereafter, He had his first major museum retrospective at the Spoleto Festival in 1984. Bianchi studied Political Science at the University of New Mexico, and subsequently law at Northwestern University. He worked as a lawyer in Chicago and Washington, D.C.

Bianchi, who is HIV positive, has been active in several projects devoted to the fight against AIDS. He is the cofounder of a biotech company and manages the funding for the development of new AIDS medication.

Source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tom_Bianchi & articles.latimes.com/1996-11-05/news/ls-61273_1_future-shock

Further Readings:

Tom Bianchi: Fire Island Pines, Polaroids 1975-1983 by Tom Bianchi
Hardcover: 212 pages
Publisher: Damiani (May 31, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 8862082703
ISBN-13: 978-8862082709
Amazon: Tom Bianchi: Fire Island Pines, Polaroids 1975-1983

Growing up in the 1950s, Tom Bianchi would head into downtown Chicago and pick up 25-cent "physique" magazines at newsstands. In one such magazine, he found a photograph of bodybuilder Glenn Bishop on Fire Island. "Fire Island sounded exotic, perhaps a name made up by the photographer," he recalls in the preface to his latest monograph. "I had no idea it was a real place. Certainly, I had no idea then that it was a place I would one day call home." In 1970, fresh out of law school, Bianchi began traveling to New York, and was invited to spend a weekend at Fire Island Pines, where he encountered a community of gay men. Using an SX-70 Polaroid camera, Bianchi documented his friends' lives in the Pines, amassing an image archive of people, parties and private moments. These images, published here for the first time, and accompanied by Bianchi's moving memoir of the era, record the birth and development of a new culture. Soaked in sun, sex, camaraderie and reverie, Fire Island Pines conjures a magical bygone era.

Tom Bianchi was born and raised in the suburbs of Chicago and graduated from Northwestern University School of Law in 1970. He became a corporate attorney, eventually working with Columbia Pictures in New York, painting and drawing on weekends. His artwork came to the attention of Betty Parsons and Carol Dreyfuss and they gave him his first one-man painting show in 1980. In 1984, he was given his first solo museum exhibition at the Spoleto Festival. After Bianchi's partner died of AIDS in 1988, he turned his focus to photography, producing Out of the Studio, a candid portrayal of gay intimacy. Its success led to producing numerous monographs, including On the Couch, Deep Sex and In Defense of Beauty.

More Photographers at my website: www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Art


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Tags: art, days of love tb, gay classics, persistent voices, real life romance
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