MEN – Off Our Backs

Brooklyn’s best queer power trio MEN have recently debuted their first video for the sassy Off Our Backs, directed by Bryce Kass.  My band opened for MEN in Glasgow last night and it was an incredible evening. Their performance was perfect. Watching them reminded me a lot of seeing Bis during their heyday. I can’t wait for their full length, if and when it arrives. In the meantime, watch the video below!

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Future Shipwreck’s Jason Villegas Giveaway

The rad folks over at my favourite blog Future Shipwreck are currently holding a little giveaway. They’re offering the chance to win a one of a kind piece by (pictured above) by the talented and handsome Jason Villegas. All you have to do is visit the blog and leave a comment on the post by October 28th. It’s that easy! Also, check out Future Shipwreck’s awesome interview with the man himself.

Bears, Illustrated

Bears, Illustrated, organised by queer artist and friendly chap Christian Fernández Mirón, is a free downloadable calendar for 2010 featuring twelve risqué depictions of big, burly men by different artists from across the globe. Okay, so you’re right, 2010 is almost over but the good news is that Christian is now looking for submissions for 2011. If you’re an artist with a penchant for bear-ish gentlemen then get in touch with him via e-mail and submit your stuff for next year’s calendar.

Huge

For the last six weeks I have been well and truly addicted to ABC Family’s Huge. Since it’s not currently gracing our screens in the UK (and probably never will) I’ve had to resort to illegal downloading in order to procure my fix. God bless you, Pirate Bay! For those poor souls not already in the know, Huge is a sitcom that focuses on a group of teenagers at an American fat camp, following their progress over the course of a summer.

Most of the show’s focus is on Will Rader, played by Nikki Blonsky. She’s been hauled off to fat camp by her do-gooding, fitness freak parents desperate to see her slim down. What they don’t realise is that she’s a bit of a rebel, not ready to be bound by society’s rules any time soon. I mean, she wears a baggy black hoodie, writes tortured poetry, listens to The Pixies and even has a streak of blue (!) dye running through her hair. In an early episode she even massacred her bunkmate’s shallow beauty magazines in order to use them as raw material for an art piece decrying body fascism. Way to smash the system, Will!

As you can probably tell, you’ll need to take this show with more than just a pinch of salt in order to be able to enjoy it in any way. It’s insufferably bad, yet I daren’t miss a single episode. Despite its numerous flaws (15 year olds being played by people in their mid-20s, ABC Family’s need to have “mood” music playing incessantly throughout every episode, occasionally threatening to drown out the stilted and unnatural dialogue, to name but a few), I’m completely and utterly hooked.

There’s a gay storyline that’s been emerging in recent weeks focusing on Harvey Guillen‘s character Alistair and his ever wandering eye. Just last week in the Spirit Quest episode we saw Alistair sneakily admiring fellow handsome camper Trent’s exposed torso during his morning deodorant application. Born as I was, with a penchant for husky boys, my one thought  regarding this storyline is simply “When are these two going to fuck?”.  I hope I’m not asking too much of ABC Family when I say at the very least I’m expecting to see a blowjob in the boys bathroom by the end of the season. Hell, get Jacob Wysocki‘s character involved too and it’ll really be a party worth watching.

Despite it’s undeniable shittyness, I can’t recommend Huge highly enough. For the lucky citizens of the U.S.A, it’s on ABC Family at 9PM Monday nights. For those like me who are stuck in the UK, you’ll just have to take the route of dubious legality. Speaking of which, I’ve only got 13% left until episode seven!

Sean M. Johnson

Sean M. Johnson is a visual artist born in Providence, Rhode Island but currently living and working in Boston. Most of his work, or at least the stuff that I’m most interested in, focuses around images of men who would typically be seen as members of the bear community. Projects such as Beard Love consider how facial hair is perceived by society, specifically by gay men, and allowed Johnson to further explore his own opinions on the notions of masculinity and power that are implied by facial hair.

Another of his projects, Sexy Men, is composed of photographs of um… sexy men, two of which can be seen above.  Johnson invited some friends to have their pictures taken at his apartment in a state of semi-undress, against a stark white wall. The resulting images are genuinely striking and I think there’s something particularly sexy about the inherent unsexiness of the harsh lighting.

Johnson’s website has loads more work for your perusal, all worth your time. Not all his work focuses on bears and burly men, just most of it! For those who aren’t interested in that sort of thing, there are Cat Kites! Truly the artist with something for everybody.

Mark Aguhar

Mark Aguhar is an artist currently living and studying in Austin Texas. I don’t know him well or know much about him but I have been following him on Tumblr for a while. His paintings and drawings are always fantastic, usually super gay and often feature shirtless boys with hairy chests.  Need I say more? Some of his stuff vaguely reminds me of a more primitive Bob London, only with strong homosexual overtones.

Mark also dabbles in sculpture work, some of which can be seen at his Flickr stream. He has a blog too but it doesn’t look like it gets updated too often so I guess his Tumblr is probably the best place to keep track of him. There’s a lot of stuff to get through but the trawl is more than worthwhile!