Friday, November 8, 2019

Physique Models with Staffs

Some of the great physique photographers used the old academic art motif of the model holding a staff, so both our Friday series will feature five different takes on this type.  We start with this Lon of New York photo of Tony Sansone.  It was probably made early in Lon's career and late in Tony's.  There were stories that Lon had a crush on Tony (who wouldn't?) and tried to convince him to take up a gay lifestyle in pre-World War II New York.  Tony didn't go for it, despite the fact that he prolifically worked for two other gay photographers, Edwin Townsend and Earle Forbes.


  1. I knew Tony's wife, if it's the same Tony. I'm fairly sure.... Sweet, funny lady.

  2. Believe her name was Rita and he was saddened by her death.

    1. My other hobby is genealogy, and I subscribe to several paid research websites, so it wasn't too hard to find some info. Tony's wife as Sophie "Rita" Frank Sansone, the New York born daughter of Swedish and German immigrants. They married in 1926 and were living in Brooklyn with Tony's parents along with their kids Pauline (age 2) and Anthony, Jr. (newborn) at the time of the 1930 U.S. Census. According to Social Security, Rita died in January, 1987, so Tony would not have had much time to mourn her before his own death in that same month. It's not that unusual for elderly couples to pass that closely together in time, btw.

  3. Tony would have made a killer Clark Kent/Superman in those early "Superman" serials.