frame: 613 x 587 x 38 mm
Acquired jointly with the National Galleries of Scotland through The d'Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008
The bodybuilder and budding actor, Arnold Schwarzenegger poses in a space rendered theatrical by a curtain that cuts the image at the top into two halves. The curve of the curtain to the left is echoed in Schwarzenegger’s pose – his extended right leg and curved right arm. It shows Mapplethorpe’s interest in the classical tradition with Schwarzenegger’s exceptionally muscular physique reminiscent of Michelangelo’s figures in the Sistine Chapel.