The District Weekly:
RELATIONS AND RELATIONSHIPS
By Theo Douglas
How to begin with “Being Gay,” up now at 2nd City Council Gallery? Just give in to it (leave the kiddies at home)–and march yourself over to Paul Richmond’s gloriously Technicolor The Dollypop Guild. It’s not that everything you need to know about being gay is in this one painting–it’s just really fun to look at.
If you’re unaware of Dolly Parton’s status as a gay icon, this painting will put you very much in the know. Richmond makes that point abundantly clear in his canvas of a small boy in shorts, striped T-shirt, and oversized ruby slippers (one of your several nods to Judy Garland and The Wizard of Oz).
He stands at the beginning of a yellow brick road stretching all the way to a “Dollywood” sign, fantastically shimmery off in the distance–watched over by Ms. Parton, in the guise of the Good Witch; by her head on a butterfly; and by her lips on a flower. Dolly’s everywhere!