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Last updated 2019-05-15
Arnold Schwarzenegger by artist Russell Spencer
Pumping Iron - Arnold Working Out, 2015-11-01
By Russell Spencer
Acrylic on Canvas, 916 x 610 mm


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Champion bodybuilders always look a little bit absurd, but they also always look a little bit magnificent, and Arnold Schwarzenegger in his prime looked very magnificent indeed. For my money none have come close to equalling him. I thought I'd like to paint him and looked around for pictures but was surprised how hard it was to find anything that really does him justice. So I stopped looking at stills and watched my DVD of Pumping Iron for the umpteenth time, and photographed this, my favourite excercise scene in the movie, where Arnie is doing standing cable crossovers while filmed from underneath. The movie was shot in 1975 and records Arnold's inexorable march toward his 6th Mr Olympia title.