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
San Francisco invented denim jeans, Irish coffee, and the modern-day fortune cookie (we think). Awesome, right? There are endless amounts of fun historical facts about this city. Now consider places namely, the bars and clubs that fueled musical and social movements that changed the world. Every day we probably walk by some of them. In fact we probably even shop, eat, and drink in some without knowing it. Learn some of the wheres and whens at Potrero Hill History Night. Pop music critic and hill resident Joel Selvin talks with music legend Country Joe McDonald about the Potrero Hill musicians, bars, and rehearsal halls that were instrumental (sorry) in early rock 'n' roll and punk rock movements. Preceding the talk, listen to The Apollo Jazz Group while you enjoy some barbecue. You can also stock up on facts so that the next time you host visitors, you'll have no problem showing them another side of the city. For example, bet you didn't know the legendary car-chase scene from Bullitt was shot in Potrero Hill. And here's a good one: The crookedest street in the city is not Lombard it's Vermont Avenue between 22nd and 23rd streets.
Sat., Oct. 22, 5:30 p.m., 2011