The distinct figure of Charles 'Chuck' Howard can be found in the works of artists such as Bernard Perlin, George Tooker, Jared French, Margaret French, and Paul Cadmus. However, it was his time as model, muse, and lover of George Platt Lynes that yielded perhaps the most intimate and striking depictions of the late Howard. A veteran, fashion designer, and restaurateur, Howard became a highly sought-after model and central social figure of Queer Modernism in New York City.

Photographer George Platt Lynes was famous in his lifetime for his commercial photographs in fashion magazines and his work with the American Ballet Theater. Throughout his mainstream career, Lynes secretly produced a substantial body of nude and homoerotic photography. Though kept secret due to obscenity laws of the time, Lynes considered these private photographs to be his finest work. His models were often friends, lovers, and acquaintances- gay artists, dancers, and writers from Lynes’ social circle.

Chuck Howard was born in Cochran, Georgia in 1927. After graduating high school, he joined the Naval Air Force and became a tail gunner in World War II. He subsequently studied fashion in France on the G.I. Bill, afterward returning stateside to New York to begin a career in the industry.

Lynes and Howard were introduced around this time at a party hosted by Bernard Perlin. After the meeting, Chuck quickly moved into Lyne’s apartment and was noted as having a stabilizing influence on the notoriously spendthrift photographer. The relationship lasted just over two years. In January 1951, Lynes wrote to his mother, “Late last week, Chuck decided to go off and live by himself. It’s a pity, for I shall miss him; but I don’t disapprove... I’m afraid that my influence is too often all-pervading, all-inclusive.”

Howard would go on to enjoy a long career in fashion working for designers such as Bill Blass and Anne Klein (to whom he introduced Donna Karan), before launching his label. In 1981, he left the industry and opened the eponymous restaurant ‘Chuck Howard’ with his partner Edward Vaughn, where a young Anthony Bourdain ran the back of the house. After retiring to the Netherlands Antilles and then Santa Fe, New Mexico, Howard passed away on October 5, 2002.

Chuck: Photographs by George Platt Lynes presents a rare collection of vintage photographs dating circa 1948- 1951 which celebrates the collaborative work between George Platt Lynes and Chuck Howard. Featuring both studio poses and candid shots, Chuck reveals the spectrum of Howard's skills as a model and offers a unique and intimate look into his somewhat brief but impactful relationship with Lynes.