Early Gay Magazine Artwork Is Celebrated In “Stroke” Exhibition


Things got steamy at the Leslie-Lohman Museum this spring when Stroke: From the Mattress to the Museum Wall opened. The exhibition is a historical retrospective of sexy and erotic illustrations by artists who made work for gay male magazines from the 1950s to the 1990s.  New York artist Robert W. Richards curated over 80 original illustrations by 25 artists, including many forgotten bodies of work and some that have been tucked under mattresses for years. Work by Tom of Finland, Bob Mizer and others were featured in early gay magazines like Grecian Guild Pictorial  and Tomorrow’s Man at a time when the U.S. government was cracking down on the “sexual perversion” of gay life.  By the late ’60s and after the “sexual revolution” magazines like Blueboy, Torso, Honcho, Mandate and InTouch came out. Each issue featured illustrations by artists like Antonio Lopez, Mel Odom, George Stravrinos and Richard Rosenfeld. They’re all included in the current Stroke exhibition, which is on display through May 25.



Breyette Senator, Kiss Me Senator



David Martin, Boxer




Kevin King (Beau), Pinned




George Stravinos, Man Exercising



Kent, The Mechanic


Beno?it Pre?vot, John Roses 


Georege Quaintance, Glen Bishop


Antonio Lopez, Mike Haire 1 

Images courtesy of the Leslie-Lohman Museum


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  • Mezaien

    WOW what great art works!. Men, men and more men. I am the most gay HOMO in the world. I love the mechanic he can fix car I can fix him.

  • sejjo

    My oh my, Kent the Mechanic may fix my car anytime. In fact, my Audi needs a tune-up.

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