Tour Tom of Finland exhibitions | 15th April | Berlin


These are the drawings that have, and continue, to create urges, desires, obsessions and a lifelong male identity for tens of thousands of Gay men around the world – TOM’s Men.

TOM OF FINLAND (Touko Laaksonen, Finnish, 1920 – 1991), TOM’s Leather Guards #2, 1976, Graphite on paper, 12.00” x 17.00”, Tom of Finland Foundation Permanent Collection, On view at Salon Dahlmann, © 1976-2017 Tom of Finland Foundation

Touko Laaksonen: The Man Behind Tom of Finland

Durk Dehner, president and cofounder Tom of Finland Foundation, gives special, free guided tours. He speaks about the risks that Tom of Finland took over and over again in just getting his art to the men who desired it – those who were so deeply affected by it. How the artist provided his audience with an identity that had not previously been available to them. And all of this happening pre-Internet!

Meet at Salon Dahlmann at noon, Marburger Str. 3., for Loves and Lives and view over 20 of Tom’s masterworks and discover the life of the artist.

Then travel to

2:00p at Galerie JudinPotsdamer Straße 83, for Ecce Homo. Gallery director Juerg Judin joins for a walk through of the largest exhibition of Tom of Finland preliminary drawings ever mounted (select works for sale).

There will be discussion of the role Tom of Finland played in the development of the Gay men’s Leather culture starting in the late ’50s.

In conjunction with BLF, there will be a special bus that will stop at Galerie Judin around 2p on its way to the Party Fetish Boat.

TOM OF FINLAND (Touko Laaksonen, Finnish, 1920 – 1991), TOM’s Leather Guards #1, 1976, Fine Art Print 18/250, 2017, 18″ x 12″, © 1976-2017 Tom of Finland Foundation

You can enter a free raffle at either location for the fine art print above. The drawing will be held on Sunday at 5p at the Leather Social Berlin (no requirement to be present).



Happy Hour x Tom of Finland Skateboard Decks

The collaboration aims to support diversity in skateboarding.

Although the work of Tom of Finland has been featured on numerous items of merchandise over the years, the homoerotic drawings will now be available for a new market. Teaming up with Helsinki-based Happy Hour Skateboards, three pieces will be featured on a new line of skateboard decks.

“When you travel the world and meet skateboarders you soon realize the two Finns people know are skateboarder Arto Saari and Tom of Finland,” said Happy Hour founder and owner, Jarkko Poropudas. “This collaboration is our tribute to a legendary artist. In addition to the bigger picture of gay rights, we want to do our part in supporting diversity within skateboarding.”

Poropudas met Durk Dehner, president of the Tom of Finland Foundation, at the Helsinki Mr. Leather contest in August, 2016. After a beer, they decided to collaborate.

The collaboration aims to support diversity in skateboarding, a sport that has long been perceived as masculine with little tolerance for other sexual orientations. A portion of the proceeds will also benefit the Tom of Finland Foundation.


By Glenn Garner