George Quaintance was an American artist, famous for his “idealized, strongly homoerotic” depictions of men in mid-20th-century physique magazines. Using historical settings to justify the nudity or distance the subjects from modern society, his art featured idealized masculine muscular, semi-nude or nude male figures. His artwork helped establish the stereotype of the “macho stud” who was also homosexual, leading him to be called a “pioneer of a gay aesthetic”. He was an influence on many later masculinity homoerotic artists, such as Tom of Finland.
When male nudity was legalized in 1968 – the flood of hard cocks and increasingly graphic sex made GQ’s artwork seem quaint. The originals slowly disappeared, into private collections and who knows where. Of GQ’s 55 completed canvases, 18 are lost. Taschen has restored 24 canvases for the book, which reproduces all 55, using perforce some period reproductions. These homoerotic love letters are unique male iconography. (SOURCE)