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Joseph Pilates Photographs

Balanced Body® presents an outstanding series of Pilates pictures in these photographs of Joseph Pilates.


We are delighted to present these rare photographs of Joseph Pilates in his 8th Avenue studio in New York City, now available as 11 x 16½ archival prints. Taken October 3, 1961 by photojournalist I.C. Rapoport, these are the finest photographs we have ever seen of Joseph Pilates at work. Rapoport was on assignment for Sports Illustrated magazine when he encountered the creator of Contrology.

11" x 16½" Archival pigment prints

"Sports Illustrated arranged for me to meet with Joe Pilates in his second floor studio. I was 24 and weighed 145 pounds. He was thirty pounds heavier, several inches shorter and 56 years older. I can still recall his handshake - I sensed he could bend me like a pretzel if he cared to. Within a few minutes I was photographing Joe bending himself into one. His gymnasium attracted beautiful people: ballerinas, modern dancers and actors who would subject themselves to his authoritarian control. Though he personally demonstrated and explained the mechanical contraptions designed to strengthen and stretch the body, the clouds of forty years dimmed his voice. Yet, I can remember him telling stories about Germany and how he outwitted the Brown Shirts on several occasions. Before we parted he encouraged me, for everlasting youth, to practice Contrology. It took me 39 years to follow his advice." - I.C. Rapoport

Please note: Purchase of these exhibition prints DOES NOT give buyer permission to reproduce, copy, print, republish, upload, post or distribute in any way. You may negotiate to purchase those rights separately from I.C. Rapoport. Contact him at: or by mail at P.O. Box 24, Pacific Palisades CA 90272.

See other photos by I.C. Rapoport at


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©2001 IC Rapoport