"Dallesandro was not only the most beautiful man in his media generation, but also put his erotic appeal out to consciously be objectified," said Weiland Speck, director of the BIFF Panorama section.
"He has this physical appearance you never get tired of watching. This is true for the moving picture as well as photographs — and for men as for women."
Dallesandro, now 60, was present to accept the award. He was discovered four decades ago and became a pop icon when Warhol cast him in the underground film "Flesh" and photographed his bulging crotch for the cover of the Rolling Stones album "Sticky Fingers."
Lou Reed name-checked him in the classic song "Walk on the Wild Side" as "Little Joe," which is also the title of the biographical documentary directed by Nicole Haeusser that screened during the festival.
Prior to entering the pop culture zeitgeist, Dallesandro was photographed by Bob Mizer, founder of the Athletic Model Guild, and appeared in an early all-male adult loop.