Author(s): Dian Hanson
Mustaches and muscles: Back to the days when men were men and sex was carefree In 1965, Tom of Finland began flirting with the idea of an ongoing character for his panel stories, the ultimate Tom s Man. He tried out a blond named Vicky a common male name in Finland followed by a Tarzan-inspired Jack. Then in 1968 Tom settled on Kake, a dark-haired, mustached leatherman who often wore a tight white T-shirt bearing the motto Fucker. Kake lived up to this moniker, a sort of post-Stonewall, hyper-masculine Johnny Appleseed traveling the world on his motorcycle to spread the seeds of liberated, mutually satisfying, ecstatically explicit gay sex. Tom lived out many of his most personal fantasies through Kake, and Kake s international fans made him the template for what came to be known as the gay clone look of the 1970s. Between 1968 and 1986, Tom published 26 episodes of Kake adventures, most as 20-page booklets. Tom of Finland The Complete Kake Comics collects all of these stories in one volume. Return with Kake to the days when men were men, sex was carefree, and everyone wore a big thick mustache."
The artist: Touko Laaksonen, the boy who would become Tom of Finland (1920-1991), began drawing cartoons at age five. His favorite subjects were the rough manly men of his native Finland, as Touko knew from an early age that men interested him more than women. His talents were further honed by art study in Helsinki. He found success in the Finnish advertising industry but secretly continued creating his increasingly erotic drawings of hyper-masculine men. In 1957 he submitted some drawings to the American magazine Physique Pictorial and the ""Tom of Finland"" legend was born. By the late 60s Tom's ""dirty drawings"" became the standard for gay art, and Tom's Men a template for a new gay masculinity. Tom's art continues to play an important role in promoting self-confidence, positive self-image and openness in the gay community. The editor and author: Dian Hanson was born in Seattle in 1951. For 25 years she produced various men's magazines, including Puritan, Juggs and Leg Show, before becoming TASCHEN's sexy book editor in 2001. Her many books for TASCHEN include The New Erotic Photography Vol. 2 and Robert Crumb: Sketchbooks 1982-2011. She lives in Los Angeles.