The Sculptor1964 by John Koch

Perhaps the most revelatory of Koch's self-portraits. It almost dares you to make a conclusion. From the stance of the model, to the gesture of the cigarette, intimacy steams from the canvas. Then there is the detail of the posing strap string, delicately resting on the upper curve of the model's buttocks. And what about the calipers? [,0]

In one remarkable picture the artist's sexual orientation appears unmistakable. A large allegory of the myth of Prometheus set in the studio, it depicts a naked, well-proportioned male model from behind, casually holding a lighter at his hip, to which Koch inclines to ignite his cigarette. The artist receives the gift of fire from a god; more to the point he gets a transfer of energy from the pelvic zone of a powerfully sexy man.

In his...
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