Online caption

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.