Al Urban was a physique photographer whose work appeared widely in physical culture and physique magazines of the 1940s and 1950s. He was described as one of the "pillars of the postwar golden age of gay physique culture" by Scholar Thomas Waugh. Urban's photography appeared in the first issues of Bob Mizer's Physique Pictorial in 1951. Like many physique photographers, Urban faced recurring legal troubles in relation to obscenity laws. Arrested and jailed in 1947 for violating the Comstock laws, Urban's career effectively ended with his final criminal conviction in 1960, resulting in a one-year sentence and the seizure of most of his work. Much of Urban's work was lost in police raids.