Art direction: Gruppe Magazine, Designer: Sarah Effenberger, Laura Precious, Accessories: Gesine Försterling, Makeup: Anne Timber, Hair: Franziska Presche, Assisting: René Carrera and Inês Ramos
In 1982, Andy Warhol, and several other artists, established the New York Academy of Art, a school focused on traditional education in drawing, painting, and sculpture. Warhol provided funding as well as creative input, and now, more than three decades after his death the academy has put together a new exhibit. Andy Warhol: By Hand, Drawings from 1950s-1980s features drawings and sketches from throughout Andy’s life. Over 150 drawings will be on view — many of them never before exhibited in the United States.
Among many artworks, there are male nudes, which were drawn in the 1950s and never meant for publication or exhibition. It was illegal to distribute that kind of content back then, so the sketches were used just for Warhol’s studies — men laying naked on their backs, depictions of penises, butts. Also on view are sketches for a “Boy Book,” a study of the male face and figure, which was never completed. Andy drew his male friends, but gave them long eyelashes and added little hearts to some of the portraits. There’s a subtle femininity to these men that helps them appear boyish. Separate from those sketches are a collection of male portraits. Men with their bodies relaxed, their legs spread, often shirtless.
A founder of the Andy Warhol foundation, co-curator of this exhibition, and longtime friend of Warhol, Vincent Fremont explains, “It is important for people to know the vital role drawing played in Andy Warhol’s life as an artist. By focusing only on Andy’s drawings, this exhibition is a way to highlight without distraction Andy’s innovative process and experimentation which encompassed pen and ink, ballpoint pen, blotted line, graphite, and acrylic paint.” It is well known that Andy sketched in the beginning of his career, but, as this exhibit makes clear, Andy continued to sketch throughout his life. …
With a special guest performance by Vivacious at 3 Dollar Bill
Scenes from the magical event at The Dreamhouse
Featuring a live performance by Boyfriend and special guests Fecal Matter
An interdisciplinary performance by five queer dancers
The super talented and hilarious queen, Jack Ferver, sent us an email about the latest show he wrote, choreographed, and stars in, ‘Everything is Imaginable’ saying: “I interviewed James Whiteside, Lloyd Knight, Garen Scribner, and Reid Bartelme about the first name that came to mind when I said “childhood icon.” Respectively, they were Judy Garland, Martha Graham, Brian Boitano, and My Little Pony. Mine was Catwoman (Michelle Pfeiffer’s).” It sounded like something I needed to see in person. The interdisciplinary performance starts with five queer dancers performing solos under a set composed of 4 columns and a chandelier by Jeremy Jacob.
It opened with ABT principal, James Whiteside, wearing a lovely shimmering dress, tap dancing and lip synching to Judy Garland’s rendition of “I Happen to Like New York.” Right from the beginning, he made sure to set the tone to ‘gay.’ This was followed by an elegant, classic Graham performance by Lloyd Knight (Principal Dancer for The Martha Graham Dance Company); Garen Scribner (a former member of San Francisco Ballet) skating to the of sounds of blades on ice, sliding his feet around while making campy faces; and Reid Bartelme (dancer and fantastic costume designer) is seen tossing a pink mane, embodying My Little Pony. A group number set to throbbing club music had the crowd nearly cheering into the end of the first half.
During the intermission, I saw Christeene (as Paul Soileau) and they raved over the costumes – fringy dresses and sexy, sheer bodysuits – a collection designed for the show by Bartelme and Harriet Jung. …
10. Pure by Diana Gordon
We’re off to a weird start since Pure is an EP and not a full album, but it’s actually immaculate and Diana Gordon deserves way more shine. She’s shed her old stage name — Wynter Gordon, of “Dirty Talk” and “Buy My Love” success — and returned to her roots. She’s an immensely talented songwriter. For example, she’s one of just three co-writers on “Sorry,” the biggest hit from Beyoncé’s Lemonade. Her own work is much less pop, more downtempo, both anguished and exultant. “Wolverine” is my favorite entry in the tracks-titled-after-proper-nouns trend that Young Thug set off. “Kool Aid” will make you call your mother. In “Too Young,” the listener is cast as her child, the product of an imperfect union that she can’t forget. It’s all so vibey — you can feel her need to express herself, to reach you however she can. Each song is its own little world, spinning smoothly on the axis of her emotions.
9. Dirty Computer by Janelle Monae
Our cybertronic seraph only continues to widen her wingspan. In the years since The Electric Lady, Janelle Monae’s star has risen so high she’s become a Met Gala fixture, a silver screen queen, and a champion for progressive Black activism at the forefront of our culture. The second track, “Crazy Classic Life,” features a deft, comic, and incisive rap that echoes her unapologetically political verse on “Q.U.E.E.N.” Which is to say nothing of “Django Jane.” Her art is at the crest of fourth-wave feminism, working out the mechanics of a cyber sensuality. …
Frankie Sharp's Westgay returns to a new home — the gay owned and operated venue, 3 Dollar Bill
Our favorite photographs that went to print in 2018
Creating an independent print publication in 2018 means lots of challenges, especially when it’s queer focussed. Producing stories for it, self-sustaining it, finishing it on time…it’s a trying, complicated process to turn ideas in your head into a high-quality finished magazine. Thankfully we have no lack of ideas (we have too many!) that we want to turn into stories.
This year we put out two printed issues, with 4 covers, photographed by Mickalene Thomas, Vivienne Maricevic, Luke Gilford and Ben Zank. It has brought us much satisfaction to print and share with you so many powerful photographs featuring LGBTQ people from around the world, captured by some of our favorite artists and creators. Each one contributes to the GAYLETTER legacy.
We decided at the year’s end that it might be nice to share some of our favorite images that we produced and commissioned from the past 12 months. It was tough narrowing it down to just 15. We love every image we print, but you can’t have a ‘best of’ without narrowing it down to a handful of the best.
So without further ado, here are our top 15 photographs from GAYLETTER Magazine from 2018. See you in 2019!
CHARLENE PHOTOGRAPHED AT HER HOME — THE INFAMOUS CASA DIVA IN BROOKLYN, NEW YORK, 2018. PHOTOGRAPHY BY TOMMY KHA
MARKUS, SY, HECTOR AND JAN CARLOS PHOTOGRAPHED IN THE LOWER EAST SIDE, NEW YORK, 2018. PHOTOGRAPHY BY CODY CHANDLER
AMANDA LEPORE PHOTOGRAPHED AT THE GAYLETTER OFFICE IN THE LOWER EAST SIDE, NEW YORK, 2018. …
With Michèle Lamy, Chloe Sevigny, Raul de Nieves, Miles Greenberg, Misha Kahn, Scooter Laforge, BasicaTV, Brandon Boyd, De Se, Matthew Morrocco, Casey Spooner and many more...
The latest exhibition of special edition prints exclusively at Tom of Finland Store
The Tom of Finland Store is equal parts online boutique and gay art gallery. We’ve seen exhibitions of work by Bruce LaBruce, Jack Pierson, Daniel Trese and now their latest — a collection of special edition prints by the artist Slava Mogutin (titled Slava Mogutin: XXX Files) exclusively available on their site. The online exhibition launched in December 18th, a day after Tumblr decided to ban adult content. It’s one of the dumbest thing we’ve heard about this year, wasn’t pornography the only reason why people went on Tumblr in the first place? Our GAYLETTER XXX Tumblr got closed down after a few successful years and a massive following, but you know what, who cares, it’s time we all leave Tumblr and show them that we don’t need to support their regressive, homophobic ideals.
“For me, the personal is political and the political is personal. At the time when our fundamental constitutional rights are under attack, I believe that queer imagery can serve as the most effective weapon against hypocrisy, bigotry, and censorship. When they censor my work either on social media or in real life, my response is always — double up on the queer, double up on the fight and what they don’t want to see. I want to shine light on the darkest corners of human nature and sexuality as a way to understand and peacefully coexist with each other, because being different is a blessing, not a curse.” — Slava Mogutin.
This exhibition is composed of photographs, performance and film work from different stages in Slava’s career. …