Unveiling TMPL gym West Village, the event was hosted by Alan Cumming, Cindy Sherman, Char Defrancesco, Frankie Grande, Marc Jacobs, Milk, Norma kamali, Sonja Morgan, Steven Klein and Zaldy
Mickey Aloisio is one talented photographer. He’s so talented we’ve featured his work in our printed magazine a couple of times (Issue 5 and Issue 9). His new body of work ‘Trips’ brings “together a collection of images from two seperate photographic journeys the photographer embarked on. Over the last two and half years Aloiso has photographed over 100 men in a total of 20 different cities.” Aloisio’s photographs have a friendliness to them that is very appealing. He often places himself in the frame and it’s immediately clear that he has a connection with the subjects he’s shooting. The intimacy between him and his figures is magnetic.
“What’s most thrilling about the creation of each photograph, is the recognition and response, the giving and taking, and the pushing and breaking of the boundaries of the other. Which ultimately explores how our identities are challenged and perceived by the stranger beside us. Each photograph becomes a demonstration of interdependence, acceptance and vulnerability.” Aloiso explains.
Join Mickey on Friday, December 14, evening for the opening reception of ‘Trips’ at Leslie Lohman’s Prince Street Project Space (127B Prince St.). The below ground gallery gets packed quickly, and hot, so remember to check your coat (I didn’t last time I was there, and was a sweaty mess.) The opening reception goes from 6:00PM-8:00PM. Should be a cute crowd — you might even run into a few of the stars of his photos, if you’re lucky.
Sunil Gupta moved to New York City in the early 1970s to pursue an MBA, but the city had other plans for him. After realizing he had a passion for photography (Gupta would often hangout on Christopher Street and photograph the young men who were bravely creating some of the first gay public spaces), Sunil left the prospect of an MBA behind and began studying photography under Lisette Model at The New School.
The images he captured during his graduate career, nearly a decade after the Stonewall Riots yet years before the AIDs crisis, are compiled in Gupta’s new book, Christopher Street. He shows us a different era, one in which gay men are dressed in Levi’s and leather, where they walk down Christopher Street proudly sporting sideburns and mustaches. Gay sex, as political revolution, was part of this era, too. Men would have sex on street corners and behind parked trucks, not just for fun, but as Gupta says in a recent Guardian article, to be “bad and proud of it.”
Sunil shows us this kind of intimacy in his photos. Flipping through the pages of Christopher Street feels like cruising. Men look straight into the lense as they walk past, some smile, some smirk. Gupta does a brilliant job of capturing the gay scene of the time. “What was initially a hobby quickly found a purpose in the fledgling gay liberation movement, documenting gay rights marches as well as the burgeoning gay scene. In retrospect these pictures have become both nostalgic and iconic for a very important moment in my personal history.” Gupta is now based in London, and has presented his photography in more than 90 international solo and group exhibitions. …
Make room in your drawer, you need these briefs!
GAYLETTER loves to showcase Tom of Finland. From exhibitions of the artist’s work, to a bedding collaboration Touko Laaksonen’s legacy is important to us. Many brands have taken Tom’s iconic muscle men and used them to amplify textiles and designs. CDLP, the Stockholm based premium underwear label, most recently teamed up with the Tom of Finland Foundation to create a sleek ode to Laaksonen’s penchant for minimalism and masculinity.
You’re definitely used to seeing gaudy, neon jock straps on various dance-floors and bedroom drawers, but CDLP took an opposite approach to these intimates. With simplicity and branding in mind, CDLP stuck to the classic white and black color-ways. Just above the pelvis you’ll find a subtle embossment of Tom’s autograph, marking the style as his posthumous own. The designs feature some of Tom’s most notable illustrations, which adorn the packaging and a limited edition print and portrait of the artist himself.
CDLP produces with an emphasis on sustainability so, not only will you be supporting a brand that supports the queer community, but you’re participating in responsible consumption — CDLP’s underwear is sewn from a fabric called lyocell that’s created using a biodegradable organic fiber from a closed loop wood pulping process. By continuing to use ethical fabrics a CDLP keeps us and the earth in good shape.
Penny Arcade’s newest show, “The Faghag & Her Friends in The Summer of Love,” is running this weekend only (December 6-8) – and you don’t want to miss it. As she told me in our interview for Issue 9 of GAYLETTER magazine, she writes all her own work, and develops it live in front of audiences. She’s probably the only performer who makes her work in public, and you have the chance to see the latest living incarnation this Thursday (12/6) to Saturday (12/8).
Following sold out performances at Joe’s Pub earlier this year, this new iteration integrates film and media into her characteristic style of real history and blistering wit. In a time where Tr*mp officials delete LGBTQ lives from the census, the CDC bans the term “transgender,” mainstream media glosses over George H.W. Bush’s role in perpetuating the AIDS epidemic, and digital platforms like Tumblr remove all “adult” content, we need Penny’s work more than ever.
Her performances are important transmissions of queer history through the lives she portrays, searing critiques of the gentrification of New York, and also just totally thrilling and captivating entertainment. Don’t miss the chance to see a living legend of downtown performance art at the peak of her powers. For the low price of $26, you can time travel to the late 1960’s and visit Warhol’s Factory, Provincetown, and New York City’s criminal, intellectual, psychedelic, homosexual avant-garde.
$26 with code “GAYLETTER,” 7:30PM, Baruch Performing Arts Center, 55 Lexington Ave. …
Presented by Rify Royalty — Hosted by Gottmik, Ollywood, Tito Soto, Bryce and Melissa Befierce — Shows by Biqtch Puddin, Rher Litré and Pinche — Music by Mateo Segade and Josh Peace
Scenes from the last party on September 11, 2018
A book that celebrates the artist’s lasting impact in our culture
We all have our own story of where we were and who we were with when we learned Michael Jackson was dead. I was in the car with my mom and my older brother, we heard the news over the radio. Despite the controversies that followed Jackson through his late years, his lasting impact on our global culture is undeniable. This is what’s explored in the new book, “Michael Jackson: On the Wall”. The work of over 40 major artists who were inspired by Michael, including David LaChapelle and Andy Warhol, are compiled and reflected on.
Contributors like Zadie Smith explore what she calls the “magical thinking” around him. If it was so clear Jackson was bleaching his own skin, why did so many fans chalk it up to conditions like vitiligo? She writes, “That’s when you understand how strong the force of desire is, how much it can deny and distort. It simply could not be that the most famous black man in the world wanted to be white. It would kill us to believe it. And so we refused to do so.”
Notable is that contemporary art still focuses on Jackson. From Donald Urquhart’s satirical “A Michael Jackson Alphabet” (2017), to Rodney McMillian’s sobering portrait of Jackson’s childhood home, “2300 Jackson Street” (2004), hung next to lyrics from Walt Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs: “It ain’t no trick to get rich quick/ If you dig, dig, dig with a shovel or a pick.”
Jackson may be dead, but his legacy is proving immortal. …
Sing along to her latest track!
There are two things gays love: Halloween and heartbreak. Our pop prophet (and recent cover star) Kim Petras has managed to deliver celebrations of both this year, and we couldn’t be more grateful. “Feeling of Falling” is an emo space-age anthem for all those times you’ve let yourself catch feelings despite every cell in your body warning you not to. She’s taken us from the graveyard to a club on the dark side of the moon, to that lit-up dancefloor where you suffer love more gladly than anywhere else.
“Feeling of Falling” has a more melancholic tone here than a bubbly track like “Heart to Break.” This song is the flipside to that feeling; it’s all the bottled-up fear that carries you to the moment when you fully give your heart away. The verses are anxious and tormented — “I can’t keep holding onto air / If we hit the bottom, I don’t know what’s there” — before Petras leans into the love she’s staved off so long: “If you want to stay, be my one mistake / I don’t want to wait anymore.” Love hurts. You love it. Imprison me, for I, except you enthrall me, never shall be free. That vibe, but very dance-y.
Cheat Codes has worked with Demi Lovato and Becky G; they’ve remixed Katy Perry and Bebe Rexha. Petras is perfectly in her element here, and she sounds every second the rising pop star that she is. “Feeling of Falling” is the natural evolution of the interstellar dance-pop sound that Ariana Grande and Zedd introduced in 2014. …
If you were as intrigued by the queer overtones in the majority of Warhol’s work at the Whitney’s newest exhibition ‘Andy Warhol - A to B and Back Again’ then you’ll be happy to hear about an upcoming gallery talk on that exact subject and more. Art historians Nina Schleif and Trevor Fairbrother will be discussing Warhol’s representations of homoeroticism on the third floor of the Whitney in the Susan and John Hess Family Gallery and Theater. Schleif is a German art historian who wrote ‘Drag and Draw Andy Warhol: The Unknown Fifties’ and Fairbrother is an independent curator who’s written extensively on Andy Warhol. The Whitney states that the talk will mainly cover, “Warhol’s depictions of queer desire, his collaborations with the photography Otto Fenn, and the social milieu of New York’s gay subculture during the McCarthy-era.” The talk will also be accompanied by a screening of Jerett Robert Austin’s Camille, “a drag parody of the 1936 George Cukor classic film starring Robert Taylor and Greta Garbo.” The film pairs well with Warhol’s work being that it’s another influential depiction of gay subculture during McCarthyism when homosexuality and drag was outlawed.
It has been 10 years since Luke Smalley created this body of work, and ClampArt gallery is celebrating the artists’ latest exhibition titled “Luke Smalley (1955-2009) | Exercise at Home” opening on Thursday, November 29. Luke left behind an amazing oeuvre of photographic media before his early passing at the age of 53.
I have been a huge fan of Luke’s work since I discovered some of his photos on Tumblr years ago, and I almost lost my mind when I saw his book “Gymnasium” back in 2004. Luke’s work has been the inspiration of many fashion photo shoots. Often, I’ll see a clear reference to his imagery and give him credit in my mind. In fact, his photos have been on a few of GAYLETTER’s mood boards over the years. His work is so timeless and elegant; it keeps me looking back again and again.
“Exercise at Home” premiered in exhibitions on both the East and West Coasts in 2008, coinciding with the release of a second Twin Palms publication — the artist’s third book. “It followed “Gymnasium” in its themes of “adolescent growing pains acted out under the guise of earnest athleticism.”
Here’s a preview of some of the work that will be on display at the exhibition. It runs through January 19, 2019.
The visionary talks influence, time and his remarkable career
It was a crisp Saturday in early October. In Chelsea’s gallery district, a few gallery-goers shuffled around and down sidewalks, hopping from space to space, unfazed by the wind, blind to the artist walking among them. Lyle Ashton Harris was arriving at his studio. Having been enamored by his work, and given his newest upcoming exhibition at Salon 94 Bowery, Flash of the Spirit, I was visiting him to pick his brain. Our eyes met as Lyle looked over his shoulder as he was unlocking the door to the studio building. He greeted me with a grin. “Did you recognize me?” he asked. “I just wondered…”
Upstairs, Lyle’s studio was beautifully filled with natural light. The space appeared worked-in, but generally uncluttered. As we grazed around the room, he busied himself applying light-background music (Solange, Kaytranda, Sade, Fleet Foxes, and Kate Bush) for the afternoon. Perhaps the most notable sight in his studio, both in size and palette, were two immense, unstretched canvases. The two faced each other on far opposing walls, but he quickly called my attention away from there and back toward the center of the room where a table scattered with photographs and several prints were arranged into piles. These were his latest series of portraits created over summer after a nudge from his dealer to get back to working within portraiture. Also on the table was a diorama of Salon 94 complete with tiny photos of the work now exhibited, pinned to the miniature gallery walls. …