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
'Tis the season for giving, folks. But we're not just talking about giving presents to loved ones and trying to woo your office crush. We mean giving back to the community. Whether you are helping out by making donations to the Red Cross (redcross.org) to support hurricane relief or serving meals at a local soup kitchen (sffoodbank.org), every ounce of effort that you can give matters. One such program, Be a Santa to a Senior, (homeinstead.com) is a quick and thoughtful way to spread holiday cheer to lonely or financially-challenged seniors in the days leading up to Christmas (700,000 to date). The program works with nonprofit agencies and local retailers to collect, wrap and deliver gifts to lonely and needy seniors in San Francisco on Christmas day. Visit the website for more on how you can help. If you have a car, the Salvation Army is looking for volunteers for its Christmas Meal Delivery, bringing food to 5,000 homebound individuals throughout the city. Many of these recipients are unable to attend congregate feeding sites due to mental and physical disabilities, and for some this meal visit might be the only company they receive today. Volunteer drivers should register online and require only a vehicle and a passenger to deliver meals. So put that car to a use in a way that's not just commuting and polluting.
Tue., Dec. 25, 8 a.m., 2012