While they often presented themselves as bodybuilders’ publications, their chuckle-prompting titles — Torso, Adonis, Honcho, Mandate — didn’t lie. Gay men’s magazines of decades past were bought by gay men who wanted to look at the erotic illustrations of well- built male bodies therein. Because any- one known to possess such material in the homophobic 1950s and 1960s could experience serious consequences, men hid the magazines under their mat- tresses. These illustrations have now inspired a traveling exhibition, Stroke: From Under the Mattress to the Museum Wall. Curated by notable erotic artist Robert W. Richards and orig- inating at the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art, the popular show contains 24 original illustrations that ap- peared in gay magazines from the 1950s to the 1990s. It also looks at how gay men, forced into the closet during those decades, used these pictures to explore their sexuality intimately. It additionally serves as a showcase for the artists in- volved. On view are works by two dozen top artists of the times, including Touko Laaksonen (Tom of Finland), Antonio Lopez (Antonio), and David Martin.More
Nothing caps off a nice day at the beach like a mouthful of sand — especially if the grit in your teeth is the reward for the grit required to splay flat-out on your stomach, for the prize of a plastic disc in your hand, and all the glory that comes along with it.
The success of Andy Goldsworthys Spire means we get more outdoor art in the Presidio. Yes! Nevada Citybased art group For Site (art about place), emboldened by the crush of people who come to see Goldsworthys poignant pile of sticks, now gives us Presidio Habitats. This time, a gaggle of artists, architects, and design firms concentrated on animals living in the coastal area, and came up with elegant, artistic ways of helping them. Well, thats the idea, anyway. No one knows whether foxes will really move into the wood-block pyramid built in their honor, nor owls come to either the geodesic tepee or the porcelain vase-houses installed for their convenience. A hawks trajectory through the forest, traced by an iron rail, makes a nice place for hawks to sit, and they might. Robins: Will they use the straw set out for them, housed in metal-cage lettering trumpeting the admirable qualities of robins? The exhibit includes its own temporary building, plenty of cellphone-tour information as you walk around to see the installations, and a gallery of good ideas that somehow didnt get past the conceptual stage. Ultimately, it doesnt matter whether the animals do what theyre supposed to, because the works are beautiful and fascinating all on their own, and those that dont biodegrade will be removed after their full year of display unless someone is living in them.
May 16-Sept. 30, 2010