OK, this guy Burk Uzzle has a crazy amazing eye. His hot show now at Stephen Kasher gallery titled American Puzzles is sublime. The exhibition, up until July 31st, features over 70 vintage black and white photographs of the American social landscape from the 1960’s through the 2000’s. Do you know the brilliant work of American photographer Robert Frank? He took the photographs in the classic book ‘The Americans’ dealing with similar subject matter, well Burk, in my humble, yet professional photographer, opinion blows Frank’s work out of the water. As Burk notes, “These photographs are an appreciation of America. Their structure, like that of America itself evokes a melody of movement and collage — not an explanation.” I love that.
He started taking photographs at age 14 and by 23 became the youngest photographer ever to be hired by Life Magazine. Yes, he has work hanging at the Met, MoMA, and all over the world for that matter, but now you have the opportunity to see his work in Chelsea for free.
All images below courtesy of Steven Kasher Gallery, NYC:
Mark is a 24 year old movement artist, teacher and fitness trainer. He grew up in the small town of Raymond, Wisconsin, doing local theatre. He kissed a fellow thespian in his community for the first time when he was 14. “I remember my heart beating so fast. We snuck into one of the wings and hooked up during the show.” Chances are, the show, him and this boy were putting on backstage, was more entertaining than the one people had paid for. “It’s so interesting to look back and think of how curious we were about it all, and how secretive it needed to be.” According to Mark, this man has since continued to live his life as straight…
Mark’s idea of happiness is “Seeing good people spreading light in whatever way they manifest it. Seeing myself and others make good choices. Seeing equality and love.” Doesn’t that sound sweet? You can also make him happy by serving him a cosmopolitan, “as long as it’s light and pink,” or a gin and tonic.
His ideal date is one he doesn’t need to plan. “I didn’t really date in high school, I was too focused on developing in other areas both academically and artistically.” This still seems true. Mark is a busy boy, exercising about 6 times a week, with varying workouts from SLT, crossfit, dance and other high intensity interval training. It’s no wonder he has that body. “I’d love to meet a man and not have any idea what we’re doing, I make so many decisions every day that it’d be so sexy and calming to have someone take over the plan making and say ‘I got it.'”
On himself, he loves his own legs and feet. “They’re such drivers for the work that I create, so I can’t help but appreciate and love them.” On other guys he likes eyes, “It’s a good gauge of honesty and helps me to see them on a deeper level. The eyes tell me if a guy is interested in my ass, or in me.” But then again they are both great things. When it’s time for Mark to go to bed… “I sleep naked because I hate feeling restricted.”
Mark took some time out of his busy schedule to take some photos in our Classic GAYLETTER t-shirt. Check them out!
This bi-weekly daytime party in Bushwick is where you queens should head to if you are still thirsty from the week. I exchanged a few words with BK drag queen royalty Horrorcharta (who’s one of the DJs of the party) about Sunday Rage and this is what she told me: “when u turn up on a Saturday u wake up on Sunday and you go to church meaning you go to the rage...” OK, got it, the party has been going on since the start of the Summer and it’s all about “chill sexy vibes.” Which is super chill. Expect frozen drinks, $7 pint mimosas, Nachos, Frito pies (I’ve never heard of that), Pretzels, Corn dogs, Hot dogs — trust me this menu is real. Other DJs for the party are Anthony Dicap and DJ DJ De Se (pictured, wow this is her second mention in this letter — bitch is carrying). The party starts at 3:00PM, which is great because you’ll likely be wasted by 6:00PM and in bed by 9:00PM. That’s been our new motto for summer sundays in 2015 — start early, finish early, don’t feel like shit on Mondays.
A new magazine where food and gays connect
If there is anything I love more than dick, it’s food. This is why I am more than pleased to be telling you about Jarry, “a new biannual magazine that explores where food and gay culture intersect.” In the Fall of 2014 Alex Kristofcak, Steve Viksjo, and Lukas Volger founded the magazine and are asking for your help to print their first issue, “Men + Food + Men,” which also should serve as their their Instagram bio, seeing it as they only post fine food and even finer men. It’s all around on point.
The guys at Jarry are furthering gay men’s influence in mainstream food, and have set a goal for $20,000 to help print and mail their magazine. By backing their project on Kickstarter, you will be repaid handsomely with digital recipe downloads so you can impress and feed whoever you’d like, a Jarry t-shirt, a copy of their first issue and a pretty masc. daddy Jarry apron. It all sounds like a very fresh idea. White women have ruled the American food landscape for too long now; they’re boring. However, the idea of Jarry is not. There are less than 20 days left before they go to print, so get your cash boys. Help these foodies out!
A long-time GAYLETTER fanboy (that’s how he referred himself and that definitely got our attention) Albert Beniada sent us an email about this event. We were so excited to learn about this non-profit film collective of about 75 filmmakers called FilmShop. “Our main program is our workshop, where filmmakers come together weekly to workshop their passion projects. At the end of the workshop season we throw a big screening party to celebrate, and it’s usually based on a theme that we vote on.” This Saturday, July 18th, you’ll have an opportunity to attend this event. The filmmakers will focus on “the theme of strange bedfellows through a series of short films varied in genre and style. The night’s festivities will also include live performances by electro-pop bands Strange Cat and Loving You and a special collaborative dance performance co-curated with the Creators Collective. An all-vinyl dance party with NYC staple DJ Babyblu will take us into the wee hours.” Check out their promo video here. You’re welcome!
Summer is upon us which means that in the fine art world the gallerists are closing up for August and heading to the Hamptons, the South of France or (if they are super pretentious like this dude I recently matched with on Tinder, St. Barths.) Before everything shuts down there is a rare gem of a show by a major figure in the evolution of the Delta style of blues music, who also happens to be a MAJOR visionary sculptor. His name is James ‘Son Ford’ Thomas and his show, titled, “The Devil and His Blues” and is now up at 80WSE gallery through August 7th. Thomas got his “training” in Mississippi during his formative years by frequenting rural house parties called juke joints where all kinds of highly spirited madness went down including blues singing, dancing, gambling and drinking. What put Thomas on the map in later years, and earned him some coins before his music achieved worldwide acceptance, were his un-fired clay bust portraits often utilizing real teeth, dentures, found eyewear and wigs — they are genius. He did get into some other subject matter as well, “His birds, snakes, squirrels and fish are all representative of Delta wildlife in addition to holding symbolic significance in the African-American folk spirituality known as ‘hoodoo.’” There are 100 of these sculptures on view in addition to two brief, yet penetrating, documentaries about Thomas and his environs; a black and white film made in 1969, “Leland Mississippi,” and another film in color shot during the seminal exhibition in 1982 called Black Folk Art in America where Thomas was a major presence. This is a remarkable a chance to celebrate the extraordinary contribution African American artists have made to our culture, especially in the wake of all this hatred, racism, and church burnings going down of late.
I know, I KNOW, please no more Tom of Finland but I had to let you know about this exemplary talk going down at Artists Space this Thursday, July 16, at 7:00PM. It’s ironically titled “Drawing in a Straight Line” and will consider Tom of Finland’s influence upon and reception by artists as preeminent post-War gay icon. The moderator Bob Nickas will be joined by New York artists Collier Schorr, Nayland Blake and Carlos Motta — what a crowd. This cutting group of artists are so talented with divergent and overlapping socio-political elements to their work I imagine the chat will be quite deep and explosive. I never suggest this, but if you have a minute Google their names, space is limited.
“As queer art practice has been deconstructed through lines of multiplicity and intersectionality, so have historical understandings of power and deviation from dominant power, been complexified. For this reason the relationship between Tom of Finland’s work and contemporary artist’s practice remains important” Ok, now take a deep breath , I’m sure if you attend the talk that will make perfect sense to you by the end, let’s hope so, if not then just cruise your heart out!
$5 donation, members free, 7:00PM, Artist Space Books and Talks, 55 Walker St. NY, NY.
I was having a real shit day yesterday. I was in a terrible mood, riding my bike through the hellish midtown traffic pissed off at anyone and everything around me. I made it all the way to 15th street when I got stopped by a cop and was given a ticket for going through a red light (I was actually dismounting my bike as I crossed the street to the sidewalk, but the officer wasn’t having it.) $25 later I was rolling down 10th street between 1st and Ave A in an even worse mood when I passed a new shop with the stupid name of ‘Kavasutra.’ I stopped to check it out. I was told that they serve drinks made from the root of the Kava plant. This dreaded hippie with bleary eyes told me that “Polynesians drink it during ceremonies, but we drink it to reduce stress.” Considering my current mood, I figured anything could help. I ordered two shots at the happy hour price of $6 (normally $12) and went home to drink it in front of the TV. 30 minutes later I was chill as fuck — I felt like I’d popped a couple Xanax, except my head felt clear, not foggy like can happen with most sedatives. I started researching this wonderful root and discovered that there is indeed a lot of science to back up the claims made by Kava fanatics. The active ingredients of the root inhibits certain receptors while elevating the release of dopamine. All I know is it worked!
I’m pretty sure you like gardens, I don’t need to ask about costume parties, and I’d bet you a rimjob you already adore Frida Kahlo. So it’s settled. Frida al Fresco is this Thursday, July 16th, at the New York Botanical Garden and it’s got all of those things.
I keep hearing about the reimagining of Frida’s “Blue House” and now NYBG is mixing in free Modelo and a Frida look-alike contest. Yes! loads of boys in drag as Frida Kahlo. “Stroll through Kahlo’s beloved Casa Azul in the Conservatory, see rare works in the art gallery, and then transport yourself to Mexico via live music and performance art, all enjoyed with a complimentary Modelo.” Okay. While I’m not sure the claim to out-of-body Mexican authenticity is going to hold up, the art is going to be fantastic, the beer cold, and the unibrows on point. And, if you dress up like Frida, you’re probably going to win a prize. It may or may not be a rimjob.
$25-35, 6:30PM-9:30PM, 2900 Southern Blvd. Bronx, NY.
We like to keep it real at GAYLETTER so I’m not going to pretend that I know a hell of a lot about this party. That’s a good and bad thing. It’s bad because it could be terrible, but it’s good because it means we, along with you, get to experience something new! Personally I’m not worried. I have a pretty good feeling about this one (have we ever let you down?) The list of performers alone is enough to make me attend — it features some of the most interesting talents in the city — there’s DJ DJ De Se, Aquaria, Sateen, an installation by Gage of the Boone & Walker Syndell, DJ Lol Kim, and the incredibly named Cumdrizzle69 (are you available to play my mom’s 65th b’day party Cumdrizzle69?). The party’s at (Le) Poisson Rouge, a famous performance/art space on Bleecker St. The hosts involved are also worth noting. There’s Pandy, Lady Simon, Neo Camp, plus a few others I don’t have the space to mention. They’re telling us to bring #Looks which is always a good sign. “Girl, please let me stick my key in your ignition…(Now let me see you) Bounce- bounce-bounce-bounce-bounce”