Wednesday 11.26.14

Art: Helena Rubinstein – Beauty Is Power

Who was Helena Rubinstein I hear a couple of you say? Well let me give you a low down on Madame (as she was universally known). Madame Rubinstein was a legendary cosmetics entrepreneur and one of the world’s richest people. “As the head of a cosmetics empire that extended across four continents, she was, arguably, the first modern self-made woman magnate. Rubinstein was ahead of her time in her embrace of cultural and artistic diversity. She was not only an early patron of European and Latin American modern art, but also one of the earliest, leading collectors of African and Oceanic sculpture.” Helena died in 1965 and left behind her a treasure trove of modern art and objects. This fantastic exhibition at the Jewish Museum “reunites selections from Rubinstein’s famed art collection, dispersed at auction in 1966, featuring works by Pablo Picasso, Elie Nadelman, Frida Kahlo, Max Ernst, Leonor Fini, Joan Miró, and Henri Matisse, among others, as well as more than thirty works from her peerless collection of African and Oceanic art.” It’s a fascinating look at what a woman with good taste and unlimited funds can do. Sure she could have given all her money away to charity, but art matters, so if a cunty old lady with more money than sense wants to support it — good for her!

$15, 11:00AM-5:30PM, The Jewish Museum, 1109 5th Ave. at 92nd St. NY, NY.


Tuesday 11.25.14

Colored Dudes

A compilation of 44 drawings by Leo Rydell Jost

Leo Rydell Jost_GAYLETTER_1

This book of drawings called Colored Dudes by Leo Rydell Jost is a compilation of his first 44 artworks that he has been working on since June 2014. He was encouraged to self-publish this book by his boyfriend Luis Venegas who’s the creator of the amazing publications EY! Magateen and Candy. Luis also helped with the art direction of Colored Dudes.


Leo told me more about his process in creating these charming drawings and how the internet played a major part while he was developing his technique, “I’m addicted to Tumblr, there is something in its randomness that won’t let me stop scrolling. So one day I thought that I should do something with all the reblogs I did…” When he started drawing this body of work he was influenced by the artists Cocteau, Warhol, Baldessari.


His drawings, which are a combination of paper cut outs, tracing paper and other stuff from the garbage that he glues together, are effortless and arranged in a very casual way,  he explained to me, “I don’t usually have much control over what I’m working on…it’s not so much about symbolism nor meaning of what you are trying to put behind things, it’s almost completely aesthetic…I’m always working with the computer, so I emulated the way I worked with Photoshop: layers, opacity, cut/ paste…”


The book Colored Dudes is 70 pages, full color and is in a limited run of 100 copies (each book is signed and numbered). It’s sold out online, Yes! it’s that good. But you can still get it from one of these stores.



Leo Rydell Jost_GAYLETTER_2


Leo Rydell Jost_GAYLETTER_3


Leo Rydell Jost_GAYLETTER_4


Leo Rydell Jost_GAYLETTER_5


Leo Rydell Jost_GAYLETTER_6


Leo Rydell Jost_GAYLETTER_7

Monday 11.24.14


The new anthology from BUTT Magazine out December 20


BUTT Magazine has a long, impeccable past in the world of queer publishing. Since its first issue in the spring of 2001, BUTT has gleefully reveled in an unabashed, sex-positive approach to covering gay men, from an extensive range of very candid interviews to tasteful nude photography. Over the past 13 years, BUTT has carved its own very large, pink name into the publishing world at large, throwing BUTT parties, forming the CLUB BUTT social network, and putting together the sumptuous BUTT BOOK, a digest of the first five years of the magazine, in late 2006 through TASCHEN.


Now, TASCHEN is releasing FOREVER BUTT, a hardcover sequel to its popular first book. FOREVER BUTT is a handsome, faux leather-bound anthology of the mag’s best interviews and photography, a massive 536-page tome that is already an assured must-have item for any self-respecting gay creative. Slated for a December 20 release, the book is a perfect holiday gift, featuring hallmark interviews with Andy Butler, Bruce LaBruce, François Sagat, Gore Vidal, John Waters, Nico Muhly, Slava Mogutin, Wolfgang Tillmans, and many, many more. Be sure to preorder your copy now — the last time BUTT released a book, it sold out very quickly.


forever_butt_426_GAYLETTERPhoto: Wolfgang Tillmans


forever_butt_449_GAYLETTERPhoto: Neal Franc




FOREVER BUTT is out December 20 via TASCHEN. You can pre-order it now!

Sunday 11.23.14

Eat: Ivan Ramen

This cold fucking weather is making us want to do only one thing — eat ramen! The soupy, salty Japanese noodle dish is best enjoyed at Ivan Ramen on Clinton Street. Run by Ivan Orkin, a Long Islander obsessed with the dish — so much so that he ran a ramen shop in Tokyo for the last 10 years —Ivan’s specialty is Tokyo shio style ramen. We visited the shop on Clinton street for Abi’s birthday and had a wonderful time. There’s plenty of debate in this city about where to find the best ramen, and while we haven’t eaten at every ramen shop, we’ve certainly tried plenty of those considered the best, and Ivan Ramen beats them all. They also serve plenty of equally exciting appetizers to go along with your noodles. There’s delicious pork meatballs, deep-fried chicken hearts with ponzu honey-mustard sauce and 1000 year-old deviled eggs. Book in advance, or better yet, go for lunch, that way you’ll be guaranteed a seat. Start slurping sissies!

Varios Prices, 12:00pm- midnight, Ivan ramen, 25 Clinton St. New York, NY.


Saturday 11.22.14


The word ‘legendary’ is used loosely these days, even outside of the ball scene — I see it used in Facebook comments all time... It’s a very uplifting word, so I guess it’s OK to throw it around as long as it’s positive and it’s gonna make someone’s day. This party used to be called Iconic, but as I said above, it’s all about being Legendary these days.... Joey Labeija (who’s throwing the party, pictured) told me more about the night: “I started throwing the party mainly because I was bored with the music I was hearing out but also because I wanted to have a night where I could play with all of my favorite dj’s in a harmoniously orchestrated manner. The music is different every time, but you can expect to dance your ass off all night to anything from Dominican Dembow and Brazilian Baile Funk to Hardstyle, Hip Hop, Vogue…” Sounds Legendary! Joey is interested in diversity, we are talking about “ACTUAL thugs dancing next to pier queens, dancing next to little Latin boys in drag.” Yassss. His goal is for the party to feel like old New York, that’s the reason behind the name… “because my generation of 20-something-year-olds were too young to actually experience those legendary nights...”

$8-$10, 11:55PM, CAMEO GALLERY, 93 N6TH ST. Brooklyn, NY.


Friday 11.21.14

Film: Queens and Cowboys – A Straight Year on the Gay Rodeo

I guess the title says it all — who knew there was an International Gay Rodeo Association and lots of lesbian cowgirls and gay cowboys who strap on the chaps, buckle up their 501s and hunker down to compete in gay rodeos all across the US? Each rodeo on the circuit has 13 events, open to both men and women AND you don’t even have to be gay to compete AND you can therefore see women riding bulls and men barrel racing, something that is apparently unheard of on the straight circuit. I got a six pack of PBR and some unshelled peanuts, sat back in a comfortable chair and watched some fierce bull riding, barrel racing, calf roping and all the related antics associated with an authentic rodeo. The film is screening as part of The Film Society at Lincoln Center’s Mountainfilm 2014 series and there will be a Q&A following the screening with director Matt Livadary and producer Erin Krozek. What an uplifting film busting open every stereotype in the book about the macho male dominated world of straight rodeo. Buck tradition and head on out to Lincoln Center for a rousing evening of cinema and the after party open to all ticket holders.

$13, 6:00PM, Francesca Beale Theatre, 144 W. 65th St. NY, NY.


Lypsinka The Trilogy


There’s lip synching and then there’s Lypsinka. I have never seen any body, drag queen or otherwise do linguistically what she can do. Although not a single word is coming from her vocal chords Lypsinka manages to deliver a performance as if it was her last breath — not one syllable out of place. Enough praise, Lypsinka The Trilogy now running at the jewel of an off-broadway house, The Connelly Theatre on East 4th Street, is up until the first week of January. There are three productions running in rotating repertory: the revivals of Lypsinka! The Boxed Set and The Passion of the Crawford and the premiere of John Epperson: Show Trash. Lypsinka is the iconic creation of John Epperson, who got his start in show business as a rehearsal pianist for the American Ballet Theatre, has been gracing stages with his electric talent worldwide for the past three decades.


Abi and I got to see the classic, ‘Lypsinka! The Boxed Set’ and were thoroughly entertained and left wanting more by show’s end. The production includes audio from singers Ethel Merman, Fay McKay and Dorothy Squires to name a few and text by Judy Garland, Gloria Swanson, Natalie Wood, Bette Davis, Joan Crawford, Phyllis Diller and then some. I could go on and on about Lypsinka but let me end here by encouraging you to go see the performer many regard as the “Goddess of Showbiz” do her thing!


$45 for 1 show, $80 for 2 shows, $105 for 3 shows, Connelly Theatre, 220 E. 4th Street, NY, NY. 

Thursday 11.20.14

Event: Transgender Day of Remembrance

They died so we can live. It’s the kind of deep statement you hear people on Fox News say about soldiers who have fought in our wars. Unfortunately it’s also a statement you could use for the thousands of trans people who have been murdered over the years for the simple, yet revolutionary, act of being themselves. Here’s a couple of shocking facts: last year 238 trans people were murdered worldwide. In America 1 in 12 trans people is murdered. What the fuck! I know it’s a dark topic but hey, GAYLETTER isn’t all beer and Skittles. This Thursday is your chance to pay some respect to the trans lives we’ve lost. The Center (The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center) is hosting a day of remembrance and we promise it’s going to be way more uplifting than the first half of this post. There’s going to be inspirational speakers, even snacks! It’s open to all people, trans or otherwise. Show up, show some respect, and make a commitment to make the world better for our trans brothers and sisters.

FREE, 7:00PM, THE LGBT CENTER, 208 W 13th St. New York, NY.


Wednesday 11.19.14

Jay Boogie’s Allure

Kay Rizz, Lilly Body and Oscar 1992 host the listening party for the rapper's new album at Le Bain tonight!

Jay Boogie_LeBain_GAYLETTER

Jay Boogie has been giving shows for a minute now, popping out at the parties WestGay and Papi Juice in NYC and always adding an unadulterated energy to the places. With a conversational flow and laid back vibe, Boogie  knows how to sweet talk a crowd while taunting us with lines like “Papi Chulo, who the fuck is you though.” It’s his equal parts softness and hard edges that keep you wondering where his music will take you next.


Tonight the Dominican born, Brooklyn raised rapper will be at Le Bain at The Standard Highline for the listening party of his new album Allure from Doom Dab records. The venue offers some great views but none better than what you’ll see inside: hosts Kay Rizz, Lilly Body and Oscar 1992 hype the room for the boisterous Boogie. Jay Boogie demands your undivided attention — and believe me if his past looks are any indication of what he’ll wear tonight then you won’t be able to take your eyes off him.


FREE with RSVP, Jay Boogie performs tonight at 10:00PM at Le Bain, 444 W. 13th St. NY, NY.

Performance: Luke George – Not About Face

The Australian choreographer Luke George was in New York City in the summer teaching the What is Queer Performance workshop, which we covered in our newsletter and on our site. Luke is back again to premier his first New York show titled ‘Not About Face’ at The Chocolate Factory Theater, from November 19-22. The artist tell us that it’s a very queer piece “where the performers (Hilary Clark and myself) and the audience are all dressed in sheets and spend about an hour in pseudo-spiritual/cult like interactive group experiences.” If you go see his show be prepared to join the performance, not to worry if you are shy, they’ll cover you in a robe and everything will be anonymous. Performance art is always so hard to explain, but when you experience it you always leave with a better understanding. of it. Just go with an open mind. I’ll leave you with a deep quote from the press release: “We will come together. We will become anonymous. We will fake belief or believe in faking it.” Sure thing!

$15, 8:00PM, The Chocolate Factory Theater, 5-49 49th Ave. Long Island City, NY.