My Dad the Bodybuilder

VICE interviews NYC photographer Aneta Bartos and her father, Zbigniew, about the relationship of artist to subject.

My Dad the Bodybuilder
The Profiles Issue of VICE included a portfolio of photographs of NYC-based artist Aneta Bartos’ 69-year-old father, titled simply, Dad. I have been following the development of Aneta’s work since 2012, when I covered a group show she was included in for TIME's LightBox blog. We met in person last year, when I wrote about her show Boys for the Camera Club of New York’s blog. That show, composed of murky Polaroids of boys masturbating, was installed in the rooms of a somewhat seedy Flatiron district hotel, and it made me realize that Aneta was thinking about her work in a much more comprehensive way that simply creating images to be disseminated—she controls their context as carefully as possible, and is an exacting craftsman in terms of color and print quality. She is sensitive to her subjects, and watches prudently over the ways her images of them are presented.
 

 
Early this spring, Aneta showed me photographs of her bodybuilder father she had begun making on a trip home to Poland. Using a Kodak Instamatic camera and long-expired film, her father is rendered in his native landscape, a powerful and imposing figure set against pastoral scenes and glowing sunsets. The aesthetic of the resulting images oscillates between family album and soviet propaganda poster, but the quality of the pictures is always dreamy. ”His presence takes me back to my youth, to what felt like an endless stretch of days in a worry-free world anchored by my powerful and loving father,” Aneta told me. “I reflect on how his commitment to education, fitness, organic food, and the simplicity of basic living has kept him so young and full of vitality.” Since we published these pictures, Aneta has returned to Poland and continued to photograph. When I saw the latest pictures, I couldn’t help but think the Dad series might become her best work yet. But I wanted to know more about the relationship between photographer and subject, because it’s not as if she is photographing just any model. It changes the dynamic to photograph someone who is this close to you. I talked to both Aneta and her father Zbigniew to find out more.
 
VICE: Zbigniew, what is your health regimen like?
Zbigniew Bartos: Before I turned 60, I ate everything, without any special diets or restrictions. During that time most of the food in Poland was natural and healthy, therefore spending a few hours in the gym three times a week seemed like enough to stay healthy and in shape.
 

 
After I turned 60 however, I began to pay more attention to nutrition. First of all, I buy all my food directly from farmers whom I already know. I prepare most of my food myself. I also make my own wine and health tinctures.
 

 
I eat small amounts a few times a day making sure that the meals contain a good balance of acid and alkaline. I always consume a lot of proteins derived both from meats and vegetables. I eat garlic, onions, tomatoes and radishes daily and my favorite fruit is apples and wild blueberries picked from the forest.
Continue

My Dad the Bodybuilder

The Profiles Issue of VICE included a portfolio of photographs of NYC-based artist Aneta Bartos’ 69-year-old father, titled simply, Dad. I have been following the development of Aneta’s work since 2012, when I covered a group show she was included in for TIME's LightBox blog. We met in person last year, when I wrote about her show Boys for the Camera Club of New York’s blog. That show, composed of murky Polaroids of boys masturbating, was installed in the rooms of a somewhat seedy Flatiron district hotel, and it made me realize that Aneta was thinking about her work in a much more comprehensive way that simply creating images to be disseminated—she controls their context as carefully as possible, and is an exacting craftsman in terms of color and print quality. She is sensitive to her subjects, and watches prudently over the ways her images of them are presented.
 
 
Early this spring, Aneta showed me photographs of her bodybuilder father she had begun making on a trip home to Poland. Using a Kodak Instamatic camera and long-expired film, her father is rendered in his native landscape, a powerful and imposing figure set against pastoral scenes and glowing sunsets. The aesthetic of the resulting images oscillates between family album and soviet propaganda poster, but the quality of the pictures is always dreamy. ”His presence takes me back to my youth, to what felt like an endless stretch of days in a worry-free world anchored by my powerful and loving father,” Aneta told me. “I reflect on how his commitment to education, fitness, organic food, and the simplicity of basic living has kept him so young and full of vitality.” Since we published these pictures, Aneta has returned to Poland and continued to photograph. When I saw the latest pictures, I couldn’t help but think the Dad series might become her best work yet. But I wanted to know more about the relationship between photographer and subject, because it’s not as if she is photographing just any model. It changes the dynamic to photograph someone who is this close to you. I talked to both Aneta and her father Zbigniew to find out more.
 
VICE: Zbigniew, what is your health regimen like?
Zbigniew Bartos: Before I turned 60, I ate everything, without any special diets or restrictions. During that time most of the food in Poland was natural and healthy, therefore spending a few hours in the gym three times a week seemed like enough to stay healthy and in shape.
 
 
After I turned 60 however, I began to pay more attention to nutrition. First of all, I buy all my food directly from farmers whom I already know. I prepare most of my food myself. I also make my own wine and health tinctures.
 
 
I eat small amounts a few times a day making sure that the meals contain a good balance of acid and alkaline. I always consume a lot of proteins derived both from meats and vegetables. I eat garlic, onions, tomatoes and radishes daily and my favorite fruit is apples and wild blueberries picked from the forest.

Continue

Douchebags don’t live on the internet like you do. Their lives aren’t subject to the same constant, screaming moralism. While you’re at home worrying about the politics of female armpit hair on Saturday night, the modern British douchebag will be at the club.

— In Defense of Britain’s ‘Sad’ Young Doucehbags

How to Get Laid at the Gym
By Brian Moylan. Photos by Ben Ritter.
It’s only January 2 and your New Year’s resolution is already screwed. Look at you, bumming cigarettes from your friends, having just one toke before you go to work, and huffing glue in the bathroom like no one is going to notice when you walk back to your desk with heavy lids and a faintly chemical smell about you. Well, I’m here to help.
One of the most common resolutions (after always remembering to take your birth control pills and not texting your ex at 3 AM) is losing weight and going to the gym more often. But no one really wants to do that. Cupcakes taste so good and a Game of Thrones marathon is way more inviting than a bunch of crazy-looking machines that make you contort your body like a monkey at the circus. But what if you could get laid every time you went to the gym? It’s possible. Every time. Here are some tips.
Continue

How to Get Laid at the Gym

By Brian Moylan. Photos by Ben Ritter.

It’s only January 2 and your New Year’s resolution is already screwed. Look at you, bumming cigarettes from your friends, having just one toke before you go to work, and huffing glue in the bathroom like no one is going to notice when you walk back to your desk with heavy lids and a faintly chemical smell about you. Well, I’m here to help.

One of the most common resolutions (after always remembering to take your birth control pills and not texting your ex at 3 AM) is losing weight and going to the gym more often. But no one really wants to do that. Cupcakes taste so good and a Game of Thrones marathon is way more inviting than a bunch of crazy-looking machines that make you contort your body like a monkey at the circus. But what if you could get laid every time you went to the gym? It’s possible. Every time. Here are some tips.

Continue

How to Look Good at the Gym
Oh, sigh. Another week, another website telling me to beautify my haggard face by rubbing it with edible cinnamon bath bombs. What’s with all the shitty advice, beauty people? Why isn’t anyone giving me useful tips, like when I was 13 and found out that straightening my hair with an iron really does work? When’s the next tip of that caliber gonna come along, huh? (And please don’t rush down to the comments and tell me I can iron my clothes with my GHDs. We all figured out a long time ago that hair straighteners are basically travel irons.)
Imagine my delight, then, when the other day, while I was steaming my face under a muslin for three hours after using lasers to cull my disgustingly unkempt bikini line, Cosmo whispered in my ear that it is now a woman’s duty to wear make-up to the gym. Oh what, you thought the gym was a “safe zone”? You’re a woman; there are no safe zones. Just waking up? Why aren’t your eyelashes tinted and curled, you pig? In the hospital having a transplant? Doesn’t mean your nails shouldn’t be so shiny that you can see your own tears in them.
I absorbed Cosmo's workout fashion tips, sought out some others, faked a limp, and conned my friend into being my gym beauty guinea pig.
GYM BEAUTY TIP #1: LIP LINER + GLOSS + TINTED MOISTURISER

According to totalbeauty.com, “Lip liner will keep the color in place when your gloss transfers to your water bottle.” This is a lie. What actually happens is that the color gets smeared all over your mouth area, making you look like a clown that just punched itself in the face with a dumbbell.
OK, so my model totally let me down by contriving to make her lips look BANGING in this picture, but IRL, rocking big pink glossy lips to the gym is terrifying. Especially when paired with a golden tan, which, once you begin sweating, devolves into streaking around the neck area. Apparently, it was really itchy too. Avoid.
CONTINUE

How to Look Good at the Gym

Oh, sigh. Another week, another website telling me to beautify my haggard face by rubbing it with edible cinnamon bath bombs. What’s with all the shitty advice, beauty people? Why isn’t anyone giving me useful tips, like when I was 13 and found out that straightening my hair with an iron really does work? When’s the next tip of that caliber gonna come along, huh? (And please don’t rush down to the comments and tell me I can iron my clothes with my GHDs. We all figured out a long time ago that hair straighteners are basically travel irons.)

Imagine my delight, then, when the other day, while I was steaming my face under a muslin for three hours after using lasers to cull my disgustingly unkempt bikini line, Cosmo whispered in my ear that it is now a woman’s duty to wear make-up to the gym. Oh what, you thought the gym was a “safe zone”? You’re a woman; there are no safe zones. Just waking up? Why aren’t your eyelashes tinted and curled, you pig? In the hospital having a transplant? Doesn’t mean your nails shouldn’t be so shiny that you can see your own tears in them.

I absorbed Cosmo's workout fashion tips, sought out some others, faked a limp, and conned my friend into being my gym beauty guinea pig.

GYM BEAUTY TIP #1: LIP LINER + GLOSS + TINTED MOISTURISER

According to totalbeauty.com, “Lip liner will keep the color in place when your gloss transfers to your water bottle.” This is a lie. What actually happens is that the color gets smeared all over your mouth area, making you look like a clown that just punched itself in the face with a dumbbell.

OK, so my model totally let me down by contriving to make her lips look BANGING in this picture, but IRL, rocking big pink glossy lips to the gym is terrifying. Especially when paired with a golden tan, which, once you begin sweating, devolves into streaking around the neck area. Apparently, it was really itchy too. Avoid.

CONTINUE