THE TEN: Male Beauties of all Time by Fame Photog Lope Navo
Oct 06, 2009 - by FashionIndie
Growing up in the 90's, travelling the world, I witnessed the great influence of American Pop Culture wherever I go, Tom Cruise's 1986 TOP GUN poster stapled on a barber shop in Boystown, Pattaya-Thailand, Brad Pitt's 1994 Legends of the Fall poster in a "mostly censored" movie rentals in Al Khobar-Saudi Arabia, Leonardo Dicaprio's life-size cardboard cutout in the streets of Lan Kwai Fong-Hong Kong, Jason Priestley and Luke Perry's of Beverly Hills 90210 in the 1990's all over the notebook covers of teenage girls (and boys) in my highschool in Manila, I have to confess I bought my first Tiger Beat with River Phoenix cover to wrap my Calculus Textbook (to get me through my most boring class ever).
James Dean (February 1931 - September 1955)
In an "fun experiment" by Irina Aleksander on her article "The New Male Beauty" (June 23, 2009) for The New York Observer. She suggested that the latest "It boys"sort of look alike-- High School Musical's Zac Efron, Twilight's Robert Pattinson, Gossip Girl's Chace Crawford, Star Trek's Chris Pine, Hairspray's James Marsden, Fantastic Four's Chris Evans and the list goes on, and she calls it the NEW MALE BEAUTY: those wide-set eyes, the narrow nose that flares up at the tip just so, the childish puffy cheeks and the not-too-rugged jaw lines, topped with carefully placed strands of layered hair. (http://www.observer.com/2009/style/new-male-beauty)
Although I agree with her that this twenty-something James Dean doppelgänger's has been dominating the box office and prime time tv this decade, whats new? Since James Dean starred in Rebel Without a Cause (1955), he's reincarnation's in the "Male Beauties" of the 60's (Warren Beatty), 80's (Tom Cruise), 90's (Leonardo Dicaprio) has always been prominent. The 2000's Young Hollywood cannot deny the fact that "another swoopy-haired, pretty-faced actor dominating the box office" has started in the 50's. Although I was born in the 80's and Tom Cruise was the king, I acknowledge the fact that on my list of top 10 Male beauties of all time, it's a not a Mr. Pattinson or a Mr. Efron topping my list- its the original, Mr. Dean.
River Phoenix (August 1970 - October 1993)
The American film actor who starred in Gus Van Sant's 1991 Semi-documentary footage of Seattle street hustling "My Own Private Idaho" is one of the reason I fell in love with american filmmaking, not only its sexiest Homosexual road movie ever made, its casted perfectly with beautiful talented stars all at the top of their respective games. The film's success solidified Phoenix's image as an edgy actor with leading man potential, without even trying, he is the most authentic reincarnation of James Dean's beauty and talent in the 90's.
Brad Pitt (December 1963)
Yes, its not a surprise Mr. Pitt's in the list, has been cited as one of the world's most sexiest men over and over again in some top 10 list all over the world. But I can't help but put him in this one, because am only human. Most of my favorite movies of all time are starred by Brad Pitt, and three of the sexiest and most beautiful characters that the silverscreen ever produced he had played - J.D., the cowboy hitchhiker who seduces Geena Davis's character in the 1991 road movie "Thelma & Louise", as Louis de Pointe du Lac in "Interview with the Vampire" (1994) - the most referenced vampire of this decades' teen vampires and Tristan Ludlow in the 1994 drama "Legends of the Fall", how can I resist?
Johnny Depp (June 1963)
There is something so mysterious about this American actor that I find so mesmerizing and beautiful, after 50 films and running, from "A Nightmare on Elm Street" to "What's Eating Gilbert Grape" from "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas" to "Pirates of the Caribbean", he just makes me ask for more.
Joe Dallesandro (December 1948)
Aesthetically speaking if the Greek philosophers will have a perfect mold for the male beauty, it will be "Little Joe"s face. Thanks to Andy Warhol, the 70's underground films will always have their nude James Dean. Although he never become a mainstream film star like Mr. Dean, Mr. Phoenix, Mr. Depp and Mr. Pitt --Mr. Dallesandro is a sex symbol of the 20th century in his own right, and an iconic beauty on my list. Like Mr. Phoenix he starred as as a beautiful teenage street hustler in the 1970's film Flesh and hailed as one of the 10 most beautiful men Scavullo had ever photographed. As a photographer how can i disagree?
Gabriel Aubry (January 1976)
"Quick, name one male model." asked by Lauren Streib on her article "The World's Most Successful Male Models"(May, 07 2008) for Forbes Magazine. Gabriel Aubry, Mark Fisher, Marlon Teixeira, Jon Kortajarena, and Greg Knudson and yes, Fabio doesn't count. In my personal list of Top 10 Male Beauties of all time, it only make sense that half of them are models and three out of five are signed with Wilhelmina Models in New York City. All five of them have the moviestar goodlooks minus the Zoolander ego that plagued most male models this decade.
Signed to Wilhelmina Models in New York City, the only male model to ever appear on the cover of Uomo Vogue while appearing in 4 different campaigns at the same time, in the same magazine. Aubry is a Canadian male model, that has been the face (and body) of blue chip clients like Gianni Versace, Calvin Klein, DKNY, and Valentino, achieved supermodel status after modeling for Hugo Boss.
Mark Fisher (January 1976)
One source of male beauties for me back in college are the men's fashion magazines, I have converted my room in a mini-magazine library and nobody can avoid all the muses for more than four decades of the legendary photographer Bruce Weber, Mark Fisher is my favorite. Mr. Fisher is an American model best known for his campaigns for Abercrombie & Fitch, Polo, Versace and Ralph Lauren. In my book he is one of the original male models that carries the James Dean charm without even knowing it.
Fisher was born in Detroit, but grew up in Atlanta and considers himself a little boy from the South.
Marlon Teixeira (September 1993)
Signed to Wilhelmina Models in New York City, Teixeira appeared on Dior Homme Campaign, the provocative Diesel Ad shot by Terry Richardson, the face of the 2009 Christian Dior Summer/Spring collection to name a few. The brazillian beauty is half Portuguese and has Indian and Japanese origins and at the very young age and early of his career he is becoming one of the top working male model right now.
Jon Kortajarena (May 1985)
Those chiseled cheekbones, full pout and sexy stare has placed Spanish male model on my top 10 male beauties, signed to Wilhelmina Models in New York City, Kortajarena has been the face of Just Cavalli, Tom Ford, Bally, Etro, Trussardi and now on his film debut on the upcoming directorial debut of designer TOM FORD "A Single Man (2009)" alongside Colin Firth, & Julianne Moore.
Greg Knudson (November 1978)
Whenever people ask me who's my favorite model I ever photographed, this American male model, native of california always come to mind, I never thought I'll ever meet a real life James Dean in my lifetime, but I did, and his body covered by Oriental tattoes of his gang memebrship on his teen years, a troubled teen like the characters that James Dean, River Phoenix, Johnny Depp would ussually play in their films and his striking resemblance to Brad Pitt is uncanny.
Excerpt from my book Acknowledgement "STARK": I remember buying my first photo book, Just Between Us by LA photographer Greg Gorman, when I was in Fine Arts college majoring painting. I will never forget that, because I had never before spent so much money on a book; but that day and from this day on I knew it was all worth it. The moment I saw Greg Knudson on the book cover in the display, I considered him the most beautiful person on the planet, and I still feel he is.
When I shot him in LA last year8 years after I bought the bookGreg told me I might be the last photographer he would ever work with since he is thinking of retiring; he has worked with most of the top photographers in the 1990s. Now he is gracing my photo book, and I am elated.