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Lisa Lyon
© Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation. Used by permission.

Reference URL

Lisa Lyon 1984

Not on display

  • Artist Rooms
Robert Mapplethorpe photographed Lisa Lyon, the first World Women’s Body Building Champion, multiple times in various guises and ‘types’ of women during the early 1980s. Lyon’s muscular and androgynous aesthetic is often highlighted in his studies of the body-builder. Here, like many of his photographs of Lyon, her face is absent and her naked back and buttocks are tied in what appears in a black leather strap perhaps referencing the S & M subculture, which is often prominent in Mapplethorpe’s work. Mapplethorpe’s photographs of Lyon appear to subvert the conventions of female iconography and beauty.


  • Acc. No. AL00182
  • Medium Gelatin silver print
  • Size 50.80 x 40.60 cm
  • Credit ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Lent by Anthony d'Offay 2010