Living the Art
Portraits at an Exhibition is an engaging book, unfolding like a visit to an art museum, recounting well the joy both of viewing paintings and of reading wall-text labels, and becoming frustrated by the constant flow of people cutting into one’s space.
Lesbian Sculptors as Expat Abolitionists
A Sisterhood of Sculptors: American Artists in Nineteenth-Century Rome by Melissa Dabakis Penn State. 286 pages, $29.95 AS I WRITE, a media circus is spinning around Harper Lee’s new old book, Go Set a Watchman, which has set off a feeding frenzy in the publishing industry. No such fanfare has greeted Melissa Dabakis’More
Sidney Abbott: Sappho’s ‘Right-On Woman’
SIDNEY ABBOTT, well-known lesbian feminist activist, died in a fire on April 15, 2015, in her home in Southold, Long Island. She was 77. Those of us who knew her remember Sidney as a pioneer in several fields of endeavor, as someone who helped to liberate consciousness from age-old shackles of ignorance and prejudice.More
The Early Riots Did Make a Difference To the Editor: I take issue with you saying early riots in San Francisco and Los Angeles ended with a thud [in the editor’s introduction to the “Gay New York” issue, July-Aug. 2015]. Neither city was the media center of the country that New York City wasMore
Takes on News of the Day
File Under When These Things Write Themselves Could this be one of those times when one segment of the population can only see something hilarious, while another (the majority?) can’t see it at all? The image went viral on the social media for those in on the joke, but the double entendre was apparentlyMore
In Mumbai, a Community Struggling to Be Born
YOU COULD BE on Oxford Street, or anywhere else in the world’s large cities where young gay men congregate. But the four immaculately styled men, clearly gay, are sitting in an old Irani café in Mumbai, perched on creaking mahogany chairs atop a linoleum floor, under ceiling fans and old posters from Indian RailwaysMore
“Harness My Zebras!”
“WHO IS THE WOMAN on the cover,” Richard Lindsay asks in the opening line of his book on Bible-based epic movies, “and why is she in a chariot being drawn by zebras?” (See book cover on page 12.) Well, the simplest answer is that she’s on a billboard-sized movie poster that Cecil B. DeMilleMore
Sex and Subtext in Tolkien’s World
THE TECHNOLOGICAL WIZARDRY of Peter Jackson’s film trilogy of The Lord of The Rings has contributed enormously to the worldwide popularity of J.R.R. Tolkien. The Lord of The Rings, a massive book that Tolkien labeled “heroic romance” rather than a novel, was originally published in England in three volumes in 1954 and 1955. TheMore
How Horror Thwarted ‘The Code’
AS A GENRE known for pushing the boundaries of good taste, horror films occupy a unique position within American cinema. Because horror triggers an emotional response in audiences through the presentation of scenes meant to revile and offend, what is deemed to be horrific varies according to the prevailing moral standards when a filmMore
Boyd McDonald’s Eye for Innuendo
IN CRUISING THE MOVIES: A Sexual Guide to “Oldies” on TV (1985), Boyd McDonald scrutinizes the anatomy of Ronald and Nancy Reagan with maniacal glee. The President is not only flabby and “sloppy assed,” but also has tits and wears more makeup than Lucille Ball. In an essay on John Loves Mary (1949), BoydMore
A Cinematic Trend Emerges: ‘Gays Gone Bad’
EARLIER THIS YEAR, my film programming colleagues and I at Frameline—the San Francisco International lgbtq Film Festival—met to begin the always agonizing process of selecting our favorites from several hundred new films submitted by filmmakers from around the world, the goal being to assemble a representative snapshot of our cinematic moment. There are aMore
The Secret Life of Action Films
IF YOU WERE to ask a teenage boy what he thought of a movie that was nearly devoid of women characters and was instead filled with muscular, handsome men who are often physical with each other and sometimes scantily dressed, you would probably get an answer that included the word “gay,” in both teenageMore
Keeper of the Dead
Brush Fires in the Social Landscape is a twentieth-anniversary expanded and redesigned edition of a monograph with the same title published in 1994 by Aperture #137. Wojnarowicz had been in talks with Aperture’s editors about publishing a book of his work, but he died of AIDS in July 1992 before the project was completed.
What Makes an Economist Great?
Davenport-Hines, a British historian and biographer, gives little space to economic theory. Yet there is a subtle case about economics to be made. What makes a great economist? asks the author.
That Last Recovery
I Left It on the Mountain: A Memoir by Kevin Sessums St. Martin’s Press. 272 pages, $25.99 “HAVE YOU fucked the angel?” asks Hugh Jackman in the opening chapter of Kevin Sessums’ I Left It on the Mountain: A Memoir, posing the book’s central dilemma: “how to combine the carnal and spiritual.” TheMore
Poet of Desire
RUPERT BROOKE is one of those figures who continually haunt the periphery of literature, a figure of myth and uncertainty. Chief among his attributes is that he is forever linked with the generation of English poets who perished in World War I.
Baldwin the Shape-Shifter
Baldwin first came to the attention of a large public in 1949 with the publication of his second novel, Giovanni’s Room, about a white man’s same-sex adventures in France.
N.Y. Showroom Models at Work and Play
ONE OF MY ROLES as a senior features editor at Town & Country was that of men’s fashion editor, a subject and an arena that I didn’t know at all well but was hired to cover, as the editor-in-chief wanted someone who simply knew the expensive name brands. At my first interview, the editorMore
Reviews of Adam Lambert’s album: The Original High, and the books: Cultural Encyclopedia of the Penis, Living Large: Wilna Hervey and Nan Mason, and Smash Cut.
Back Story of a Closely Watched Career
Basquiat: The Unknown Notebooks Edited by Dieter Buchhart and Tricia Laughlin Bloom Skira Rizzoli Publications/Brooklyn Museum, 246 pages, $50. THERE’S A UNIQUE POWER in the raw, organic evidence of an artist at work—unfinished canvases in a paint-spattered workspace, rough studies and drawings, and even the artist’s personal effects. One thinks of Francis Bacon’sMore
SWM Looking for Same
THE TITLE of Jane Ward’s book is not meant to be ironic. Her argument is that while sexual activity between straight white men (SWM) does take place, it doesn’t mean that the participants are gay. The book is about exploring the circumstances under which this situation can be said to arise.
Sartorial Styles of the Counterculture
Sex and Unisex: Fashion, Feminism, and the Sexual Revolution by Jo B. Paoletti Indiana. 216 pages, $25. THE AUTHOR of Sex and Unisex begins by quoting Republican candidate Rick Santorum from 2008: “You’re a liberal or a conservative in America if you think the ’60s were a good thing or not. If theMore
Where Bishop Landed
The North Haven Journal illuminates a more intimate story still, Bishop’s relationship with the much younger Alice Methfessel, an administrator at Harvard University, where Bishop had begun teaching in 1970.
Another Hat for Warhol: Book Illustrator
Warhol by the Book Williams College Museum of Art March 7 to August 16, 2015 AN EXHIBITION that ran this past summer at the Williams College Museum of Art, War-hol By the Book, was quite remarkable both for the sheer beauty of its objects and for revealing a side of Warhol that, amazingly,More