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Modern Classics, Tony Sansone, 1932

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Art and Design Books60 of 64Madame Chiang Kai-Shek's painting book (1 of 2)Roycroft Books
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Posted 4 years ago


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"Modern Classics" was the second self published book by Anthony J. "Tony" Sansone whose iconic images have been associated with the Art Deco movement. This is a softcover portfolio book held together with a piece of blue twine, originally sold for $1.00 by mail in 1932.

Tony Sansone was and is called the first American Adonis. Much of Tony Sansone's enduring fame in bodybuilding history was the result of his success as a model. Sansone began modeling when he was still a teenager. He became a much sought-after model who posed for paintings, photographs, and sculpture. He was featured on many magazine covers, both American and European. He modeled for statues by James Earle Fraser ("Meriwether Lewis;" Fraser also designed the US buffalo nickel), Arthur Lee ("Rhythm" which was created over five years, 1925 - 1930), and Malvina Hoffman ("Nordic Type" and "Elemental Man"). Sansone published several photo books, including Modern Classics, Rhythm, Du-ets (sic ) with then unknown body builder Charles Atlas, and Nudleafs (a portfolio of 20 8X10 photographs). By 1936, he had sold over 15,000 copies of Modern Classics and Rhythm combined.


  1. PhilDavidAlexanderMorris PhilDavidAlexanderMorris, 3 years ago
    I have seen much of him in some of the photography books I had by the master photographers of the era. His physique was all the more incredible because he was six feet tall, and did not have the bulkiness that size usually had. Nice book.

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