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
With neighborhood institutions like the 21 Club closing to make way for yuppie cocktail bars, Brown Jug remains an oasis — and one that takes full advantage of the state's operating hours window, 6 a.m. to 2 a.m. daily.
Fans of goofy observational diatribes and feigned aristocratic snobbery can rest easy this week, thanks to the stand-up comedy of Arj Barker and Natasha Leggero. Barkers quickly escalating rants usually devolve into hysterical, absurdist punchlines a story about finally getting to fly in business class, for example, ends with a furious tirade about finding a baby there: What kind of fucking business does a baby have? Oh, are you a very important baby? Are you a keynote gurgler at a major rattle conference in Auckland? Barker also appears in Flight of the Conchords as Dave, who, among other things, sings a song about there being too many dicks on the dancefloor. Leggero, for her part, has appeared on Chelsea Lately and The Sarah Silverman Program, and as a drunk stripper on Reno 911. Her stand-up involves a bitchy high-class masquerade featuring elbow-length gloves and fur coats, leading to such audience-directed questions as Does anyone here live in a servantless household? Hilarious critiques of hip-hop sampling practices (Since when did yelling over our favorite hits from the '80s become music?) and a breathless impersonation of every girl from American Idol are just a couple of the witty delights in her repertoire. Expect a night of smart, silly, searing comedy.
July 1-3, 8 p.m.; Fri., July 3, 10:15 p.m., 2009