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
The marketplace is cluttered with remixes that play like glorified covers, lazily pasted-together retreads exhibiting little imagination. That's not the case with Guerolito, the remixed companion piece to Beck's latest gem, largely because the rich, interwoven ingredients in the artist's stylistic melting pot lend themselves so naturally to such a treatment. That, and the fact that the talent (Air, Beastie Boys) is A-list. Not that the mix doesn't have its share of missteps: Islands' wildly disjointed, slowed-to-a-crawl take on "Que Onda Guero" wipes out all traces of the original's funky swagger. But Guerolito is far more than a souvenir for meticulous collectors, if only for Air's typically lush reinvention of "Missing" and Ghost Range's rollicking, everything-but-the-kitchen-sink production of "E-Pro."