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Day 5: Joe Bobowicz

published on 1 February 2019

SHOWstudio Editorial Assistant Joe Bobowicz analyses the work of artists such as Luke Edward Hall and Jean Cocteau in his seven day exploration of 'pride' on Tumblr.

SHOWstudio Editorial Assistant Joe Bobowicz analyses the work of artists such as Luke Edward Hall and Jean Cocteau in his seven day exploration of 'pride' on Tumblr.

Two sailors, Luke Edward Hall, platter ‘As developed by Foucault in his seminal interview Friendship as a Way of Life, homosexuality is not a type of desire, rather it is something desirable. Foucault comments on the way that socialization forces a concept of homosexuality to its most base form: two blokes meeting and then fucking. This reductive portrayal ignores the motifs of affection homosexuality encapsulates. Homosexual men allow themselves to be naked around other men, touch other men and make their care for one another explicit. For heterosexual males this is condemned, demarcated by a distinctive unease to interact with other men in such a way. However, in the eyes of society, heterosexual females can play with one another’s hair, share feelings and display a reciprocal tactility. Foucault holds that individuals of all sexuality should take precedent from the tropes of homosexual relations, being able to share intimacy regardless of a companion’s gender.’ - Joe Bobowicz, Cottweiler’s subtle queering.
Blue chair, Luke Edward Hall Luke Edward Hall is an artist and designer whose work I first came across at the Alex Eagle store Christmas soirée. I was perusing the ceramics the shop had on offer when I noticed one of his signature platters. It reminded me of Jean Cocteau but with a plummy nuance; the tension between aristocratic finery and homoeroticism drew me in.
Portrait of René Crevel for Détours by Eugene McCown, 1924 It comes as no surprise that artist and musician Eugene McCown was in Jean Cocteau’s circle - the eccentric intellectuals of nineteen-twenties Paris.
Self-portrait, Claude Cahun, 1928 An artist whose work investigated gender binaries long before queer theory and gender studies were established as fields in their own right. Born as Lucy Schwob, the artist changed their name to Claude Cahun because of its genderless quality.
Baren (The Bar), Nils Dardel, 1920 Dardel was a resident of Paris from 1910 onwards and was known to frequent artist haunts. With this in mind, the limp wrists and cross-room stares indicate an undertone of splendid gayness.
Paul Cadmus The elegance of this painting is something to behold. The work presents a sexual charge that teeters between flippant and covert - this effect achieved by factors such as the averted gaze, grasped baguette and the bicycle seat encroaching on comfort.
Contact sheet, Juan Dubose and Keith Haring, 1981 ‘I was really tired of only doing the baths and cruising. I finally met Juan Dubose, who ended up being my first lover, at the St Mark’s Baths. We met at the end of the night, after I had already been with some other people. I had great sex with him and just decided he was the right person for me.’ - Keith Haring.
Untitled, image from Robert Mapplethorpe: Early Works, 1970-1974 (New York: Robert Miller Gallery) Mapplethorpe’s mixed media collation gives the work another dimension beyond the erotic, namely the aesthetic. ‘Many of his earliest collages, often appropriations from gay porn, depend exclusively on framing to transform their sources.’ - Robert D Katz in Robert Mapplethorpe’s Queer Classicism: The Substance of Style.
Raymond Radiguet endormi, 1922, Jean Cocteau Radiguet was a long-time companion of Cocteau’s. The pair were not romantically involved, however their friendship was one of the aforementioned Foucauldian male-to-male tenderness.
Radiguet et le pantin (Radiguet and the puppet), circa 1920
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