100 Heroes: Karlheinz Weinberger

The gay man who mastered the art of homoerotic photography.

100 Heroes: Karlheinz Weinberger

Karlheinz Weinberger was a photographer, known for his homoerotic portraits of rebellious young men.


Born in 1921, in Zürich, Weinberger taught himself photography.

Photography was his passion, but he worked a number of jobs in order to pay the bills.

He died in 2006.


Weinberger's photography focused on creating intimate, homoerotic photographs of young, rebellious, working-class men.

He photographed construction workers, bikers, and athletes for the underground gay journal Der Kreis.

In 1958 he began focusing his camera on the Halbstarken, an edgy, antiauthoritarian teen subculture whose members styled themselves as bad boys à la James Dean in Rebel Without a Cause or Elvis Presley.

Der Kreis

Der Kreis was a German-language gay magazine.

Weinberger began working with them from around 1948, with the most prolific period being 1952 to 1965. His photographs were published under the pseudonym of Jim.

Weinberger's photographs had a significant impact on homosexual aesthetics until Der Kreis stopped publishing in 1967.

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