Tom of Finland Organic Vodka® sponsors photo competition and charity auction

The sex-positive Tom of Finland Photo Contest celebrates the life of the ground-breaking artist, while also raising funds for his foundation during Pride month. 

The finalists have been selected for the 2022 Tom of Finland Photo Competition and Charity auction, celebrating one of the most-influential artists of the 20th century during Pride Month. Sponsored by Tom of Finland Organic Vodka®, the contest has been narrowed down to stunning, provocative images from seven photographers – all that remains now is the final vote!

For the competition, artists were asked to create a modern interpretation of Tom of Finland’s famous art which spanned from the mid 1950s to the early 1990s, truly a first of its kind in celebrating gay sexuality in a positive, affirming, and unashamed fashion. Tom of Finland’s work has inspired countless artists and entertainers, including Andy Warhol, Robert Mapplethorpe, Freddie Mercury, Jean Paul Gaultier and George Michael. Photographers making it to the final round of the competition include:

Through June 20, each artist will have their work featured on the Tom of Finland Organic Vodka Instagram site: On July 1, two winners will be chosen – a Jury Winner and an Audience Winner. The public votes for the Audience Winner by commenting on the social media post featuring the photograph with the word VOTE and #YourTomIsShowi. The Jury Winner is selected by a judging panel which includes representatives from Tom of Finland Organic Vodka and other artists.

Winners will receive $1,000 for their work, as well as the $500 each finalist received for entering the competition. Following the voting, all of the finalist photographs will be listed on charity auction site CharityBuzz with all proceeds going to the Tom of Finland Foundation.

Tom of Finland 2021 Photo Contest Jury Prize Winner – Photo by Benjamin Veronis

“It’s an exciting proposition to asks today’s contemporary artists to reimagine and celebrate the work of such an important artist not only to the gay community, but the entire world of contemporary art,” said Olli Hietalahti, CEO of Spirit of Tom and co-creator of Tom of Finland Organic Vodka. “The finalists have captured the very essence and ethos of Tom of Finland’s art. It’s very important to us that Tom’s work lives on for generations to enjoy and explore, making the support of the Tom of Finland Foundation all the more critical.”

About Tom of Finland

Tom of Finland (Touko Laaksonen, Finnish, 1920-1991) is widely regarded as one of the twentieth century’s most influential artists for his groundbreaking representation of the male figure. In his youth, Tom trained at an advertising school, but what he would come to call his “dirty drawings,” which he first began developing as a teenager, were the true focus of his attention, both during this formative period and throughout the entirety of his life. These masterful renderings of virile men engrossed in acts of homoerotic desire can be approached along several interpretative lines—art historical, social, technical—but each of them points to the revolutionary nature of his project. A master draftsman, whose passion for both his medium and his subject matter enabled him to become a powerful cultural force, Tom gave form to an imaginative universe that in turn helped fuel real-world liberation movements and enabled gay men to access their strength in new ways. Tom’s drawings reaffirm the centrality of sexuality, joy, and the body in all areas of human endeavor.

About the Tom of Finland Foundation

Since 1984, the Tom of Finland Foundation has been dedicated to protecting, preserving, and promoting erotic art. Today the Foundation continues to educate the public about the cultural merits of erotic art, as well as promote healthy, tolerant attitudes toward sexuality.

About Tom of Finland Organic Vodka

Tom of Finland Organic Vodka® is distilled at Lignell & Piispanen, the oldest distillery in Finland, from 95% wheat and 5% rye, with water from the surrounding Arctic region. Voted one of the “Top 10 Vodkas of 2020,” 5% of all sales go back to Tom of Finland Foundation, which is based in Tom House, the Echo Park (Los Angeles) bungalow in which Tom lived his truest years of personal expressive freedom. Today, Tom’s work is in the permanent collections of museums around the world, including MOCA and LACMA in Los Angeles, MoMA in New York, SF MOMA, the Art Institute of Chicago, and many more.

Please drink responsibly.

BWM Staff

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