Lisa Lyon, Bodybuilding Pioneer and Mapplethorpe Muse, Dies at 70

Lisa Robin Lyon was born on May 13, 1953, in Los Angeles. Her father, Leonard Lyon, was an oral surgeon, and her mom, Roslyn (Robin) Lyon, was a homemaker.

Lisa advised Mr. Chatwin that she had a darkish childhood and created rituals — counting, touching issues — to self-soothe. Before she discovered bodybuilding fame, she needed to be a movie star or an artist or a medical illustrator. She labored for a time writing script synopses.

After her early fame as a physique builder, she principally left that world behind, although she printed a e book, “Lisa Lyon’s Body Magic,” in 1981. In 2000, she was inducted into the International Fitness and Bodybuilding Federation Hall of Fame.

Mr. Mapplethorpe was not the one artist to memorialize Ms. Lyon. She was photographed by Helmut Newton, Marcus Leatherdale and Lynn Davis, amongst others, and rendered in bronze by Barry Flanagan, an Irish-Welsh sculptor. She additionally appeared in a number of films, together with “Vamp,” a cheerfully panned Grace Jones automobile a couple of vampire; Ms. Lyon had a bit half as a stripper.

In addition to Mr. Schwartz, she is survived by her sister, Duffy Hurwin. An early and very transient marriage to an ethnologist and part-time bodybuilder led to divorce, as did her marriage to Bernard Lavilliers, a French singer-songwriter. She had a romantic relationship with John Lilly, an eccentric neuroscientist and creator whose work with isolation tanks and research of dolphin communication impressed two Hollywood films, “The Day of the Dolphin” (1973) and “Altered States” (1980); he adopted her in 1987. Ms. Lyon’s third husband, Alan Deglin, an actor she married in 2009, died in 2020.

In the Washington Post interview, Ms. Lyon mentioned her aspiration was to seem like an animal, “a sleek, feline animal.” The final praise to her look, she mentioned, can be “if someone asked, ‘What planet did she come from?’”

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