Friday, February 27, 2009

I Couldn’t Resist

There’s been a lot of debate in the last few days centered around my latest painting, and I’ve enjoyed reading some of the various conversations floating around online. After reading an essay this morning on a site called Hillbuzz, I decided to add a little more to the discussion. The article, titled “We’re Sure There’s Something in This to Upset Everyone,” uses my painting as an example of what the gay author feels is a misguided effort by marriage equality activists to alienate opponents by seeking marriage over civil unions or domestic partnership agreements. You can read his very thorough and thoughtful argument HERE. And here’s my response:

This is Paul Richmond, the artist responsible for bringing you “Noah’s Gay Wedding Cruise,” which I’m thrilled to see has sparked some interesting debate here and elsewhere online. What more could an artist hope for?

Even though there’s probably not much question about my stance on the issue, I couldn’t resist throwing in my two cents after reading your well-argued essay and some of the follow-up comments. You make a good case for dropping the whole “marriage” thing to avoid getting Middle America’s panties in a bunch. However, I disagree with the implication that hetero-centric religious groups somehow own “marriage.” In a follow-up comment to your article, Lynda states that she’s against gay marriage because she feels “that the term marriage is a religious designation that shouldn’t be dictated by government.” If this were true, and marriage was governed by, say the Catholic Church, then only those who are baptized and in good standing with the church, never divorced, and who have successfully completed their requisite Pre-Cana counseling would be permitted to say their I do’s. We know that’s not the case. Marriage is a legal contract that various religions put their own spin on, but I believe it’s dangerous to let them make the rules for all of us. Why should we compromise the assertion of our rights as American citizens because some people would rather let their version of God decide what’s best? Separation of church and state, anyone?

I can’t stand behind accepting a lesser version of “marriage” (which simply doesn’t cover all the same ground) just to appease people with a misunderstanding of what the argument is even about. It would be like going back in time and telling women who were fighting for the right to vote, “Oh, sorry. There are just too many people who would be upset by this. Besides, men should be in charge. It says so in the Bible. How about you express your political ideas in another way - maybe make some pretty banners for your favorite politician?”

Although you may not see a white veil in your future, nor do you wish to stand alongside Ellen and Portia in my ark of gay love, I don’t understand your suggestion that gay and lesbian couples seeking marriage equality are just misguided conformists desperate to emulate their straight, suburbanite counterparts; as you said, “aping someone else’s traditions.” Plenty of heterosexual couples want nothing to do with the institution of marriage for many of the same reasons that you feel disillusioned by it, and being non-traditional isn’t a concept we either own nor should be obligated to. As we’ve witnessed in states where gay marriage has become (even fleetingly) actualized, there are a lot of gay and lesbian couples who do wish to take part — and perhaps not because they’re trying to fit into some societal, heterosexual mold. Maybe it really is about love and their desire to make a commitment that will be recognized, honored, and upheld by their community and governing body at large.

And yes, maybe some of them even want to wear white and release a dove. :) Shouldn’t they be allowed?

Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Gayest Ever!

The gay blog site Towleroad deemed my Noah painting the “Gayest Painting of Our Time” in an article where the author describes being “momentarily stunned by the gayness of it all.” Check it out here: TOWLEROAD.

Giclee prints are available in my Etsy store HERE, and if you’re near the San Francisco area, be sure to check out “Noah’s Gay Wedding Cruise” in person at Gallery Arcane in the exhibit “Sweet ‘n Low: Optimism in a Pessimistic Age” which opens March 5.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Noah’s Gay Wedding Cruise

I wanted to share my newest painting, “Noah’s Gay Wedding Cruise,” which is now available as a limited-edition giclee print HERE.

I chose to symbolize our inevitable victory in the fight for marriage equality by painting my own adaptation of the biblical flood, complete with some drowning sinners (including Ann Coulter and Larry Craig), and a grand ark/cruise ship filled with happy gay and lesbian animal couples and a few famous human guests too (such as Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi). It’s going to be displayed in the exhibit “Sweet & Low: Optimism in a Pessimistic Age” at Gallery Arcane in San Francisco which opens Thursday, March 5th.

Here are some detail shots:

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Here, There, Everywhere...

Thank God for Google Alerts – without which I would surely miss out on so much random fun. Today’s update contained a link to some interesting photos of the Puerto Rican gay fiction novel “Dos centímetros de mar” by Carlos Vázquez Cruz (which uses my art on the cover). As the blog hosting the images is written in Spanish, I’m left only to speculate about the intentions of the photographer (I can rationalize the first one, but I'm not so sure about pic #2). Perhaps it’s simply to show that the book is multi-functional — it’s great on a plane AND cats love it too! :)

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Dolly's on the Move

My piece “The Dollypop Guild” is continuing it’s West Coast tour. It was accepted into a very appropriately titled show: “Being Gay: A Visual Dialogue Between Straight and/or LGBQT Artists” at the 2nd City Council Art Gallery and Performance Space in Long Beach, CA. I’m thrilled to be able to spread a little more Dolly-love to the LA crowd. Many thanks to the fabulous staff at World of Wonder Gallery who are generously transporting Dolly to her new exhibit space at this very moment.

The reception for “Being Gay” is on Saturday, March 14 from 7-9 pm and there are some cool gallery events relating to the exhibit in the works. Here’s a link to check out more info:

The Dirtiness Continues

A certain Cheesecake Boy is rumored to be partying it up in Detroit this weekend as the sex-tacular “Dirty Show” festivities continue through Valentine’s Day. If you’re in the area and would like to check out my “Room With a View” piece along with a ton of fabulous erotic art, check out for all the details. The exhibit also features the contributions of my new friend, Michael Breyette, who does some great gay pin-up work (I gave Dennis a print of his piece “Pensive Sky” for Hanukkah and he loved it!). You can see Michael’s fantastic work here:

And if you can’t make it to the Dirty Show in person but hate to miss out on the action, you can always get a Cheesecake Boy giclee print of your very own, including “Room With a View and a host of other pants-dropping wonders, in my Etsy store here:

Dolly and Pauly-Pants

Ok, this is officially my new favorite photo EVER. Congrats, Lee!