The Male Fantasy Icon series, by Pacifico Silano, appropriates images of Al Parker, a famous gay porn star in the 1970s. Sometimes Silano works with magazine pages with their edges turned down or staple bindings showing; other times, with pages that are torn or crumpled, or with parts of the image removed. In doing so, he not only examines Parker’s persona, but also confronts his own consumption of the imagery. The series showcases the dichotomy of the images as public cultural icons meant for private use.
In the photograph Weekend Lock Up, 2012 we see pieces of Parker with a Tom Selleck-esque moustache in poses reminiscent of a more carefree time, before the AIDS epidemic. Without worry of sexually transmitted infections, Parker is erotically intertwined with a companion, lost in ecstasy. Silano’s work fuses the fantasy of an earlier moment in the culture and a poignant recollection of what has been lost.
Pacifico Silano received a BFA from the Pennsylvania College of Art and Design and an MFA in photography from the School of Visual Arts, New York. He has exhibited internationally, including group shows at the Bronx Museum of the Arts; CONTEXT art fair, Miami; Pride Photo Award, Amsterdam; and ClampArt, New York. Awards given to Silano include the 2012 Individual Photographer’s Fellowship from the Aaron Siskind Foundation and First Prize in the Open Category at the 2012 Pride Photo Award in Amsterdam.