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Browsing the archives for the Tom News around the World category.

Melbourne artist Brad Gunn makes Tom of Finland sculptures

Friends of Tom, Tom News around the World

Getting the boot


Paying homage to the homoerotic work of iconic artist Tom of Finland (Touko Laaksonen), Melbourne sculptor Brad Gunn presents his own take of Laaksonen’s work in Boots and Boys during Melbourne Leather Pride.

The Victorian College of the Arts graduate will show a series of limited edition sculptures designed to capture the “raw sex appeal” of Tom of Finland’s unique characters at Hares & Hyenas, Fitzroy until the end of the festival.

info: Visit http://www.bradgunn.com/


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TOM in “Art” – German Art Magazine – March 2011

Events of Interest, For the Record, Tom News around the World

MARCH, 2011 ISSUE of ART magazine with report on TOM and the exhibition in Turku.










TOM OF FINLAND (Finnish, 1920 – 1991),
Untitled, 1986, Color pencil on paper,
ToFF #86.04,
© 1986 Tom of Finland Foundation


ENGLISH TRANSLATION (via Google-translate)

After Elmgreen & Dragset showed his drawings at the last Venice Biennial, dedicated in 2011, the European cultural capital of Turku artist legend Tom of Finland. A large retrospective exhibition until 18 December 70 works by the artist who really came from Finland, but not Tom said: Touko Laaksonen When he was born in 1920 in the small town on the outskirts of Turku Kaarina, he died in 1991 in Helsinki. Art historians are still arguing whether his vigorous men images now sent to stereotypes play-ing or just use stereotypical images are.

Touko Laaksonen, better known as “Tom of Finland” (1955)
Gay icons of masculinity (untitled, 1986)


Susanne Baade
Bildredaktion/ Picture desk

Gruner+Jahr AG & Co KG
Redaktion art

Am Baumwall 11
20459 Hamburg
Postanschrift: 20444 Hamburg



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West Hollywood Patch Article

For the Record, Tom News around the World
West Hollywood Park
647 N San Vicente Blvd, West Hollywood, CA

Censorship a Theme at Erotic Arts Fair

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Councilmember Abbe Land and Mayor John Heilman officially open the Erotic Arts Fair at West Hollywood Park.
Photos (4)


Councilmember Abbe Land and Mayor John Heilman officially open the Erotic Arts Fair at West Hollywood Park. Credit JamesF.Mills
Drag nuns, The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, were on hand as part of the official opening ceremony. Credit JamesF.Mills
Michael Thorn, editor-in-chief of Instigator Magazine, weighs in on the censorship debate. Credit JamesF.Mills
Bo Tobin of Tom of Finland Foundation offers his insight on the censorship discussion. Credit JamesF.Mills

At the event this weekend, LGBT community members discuss public homoerotic imagery and where the city of West Hollywood fits in.

By James F. Mills | Email the author | March 27, 2011

Censorship was the talk of the 16th annual Tom of Finland Erotic Arts Fair, which opened its two-day exhibition at West Hollywood Park Auditorium on Saturday. Dozens of exhibitors displayed their erotically themed artwork, while hundreds of people came through to see and purchase it.

Dedicated to preserving and exhibiting erotic art, Los-Angeles-based Tom of Finland puts on the fair each year.

Despite years of city sponsorship, the Arts and Cultural Affairs Commission (ACAC) voted in January not to sponsor the art fair. One reason given was that the event would be taking place in the park “where there are children.”

Dan Berkowitz, co-chair of the city’s Lesbian and Gay Advisory Board and a former president of the Tom of Finland Foundation, was present at the ACAC meeting.

“The most alarming thing is none of the people on that commission are our enemies. They are one of us,” Berkowitz said. “When the LGBT community is attempting to censor its own … things are really in trouble.”

The vote provoked outrage across the gay community with cries that the gay community had gotten too far from its roots where homoerotic imagery was encouraged.

The City Council quickly moved to approve sponsorship of the arts fair. The event went on as scheduled, but not everyone was supportive.

Bo Tobin of the Tom of Finland Foundation reported that the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center declined to put up posters promoting the Erotic Arts Fair. Tobin said center workers were concerned about the poster containing the image of Michelangelo’s “David” and the use of the word “erotic.”

With censorship on everyone’s minds, the fair held a symposium Saturday afternoon titled: “Is Self-Censorship Really Self-Loathing in Gay Culture?”

Artist Michael Kirwan called the censorship controversy just part of a larger problem in the LGBT community.

“How can we be gay men without expressing our sexuality?” asked Kirwan. “Arts have always been a way for people with minds of courage to express themselves . . . allowing the most needy among us to commandeer our community.”

Berkowitz believes the problem is more insidious than censorship.

“We are all becoming victims of our success in mainstreaming gay culture,” he said. “Bare chaps may be OK in Silver Lake, but they’re not OK in La Jolla.”

Longtime activist Ivy Bottini, also a member of the city’s Lesbian and Gay Advisory Board, believes the gay community has allowed larger organizations to take over what smaller, grass-roots groups once did.

“We have become a community of check writers,” she said. “We used to do protests in the streets. Unless we get off our butts, bare or not, we are digging our own graves.”

Bottini believes that in the push for same-sex marriage, the LGBT community has been cleaned up for better presentation to the rest of society. And by cleaning up, many on the edge are being left out.

Michael Thorn, editor-in-chief of Instigator magazine, agreed, saying that corporate sponsorship of gay pride has diluted pride because the companies want to clean things up and get rid of the rough edges.

“Everybody’s got a right to be normal, but there is something even better about not being normal,” said Tobin.

Later in the afternoon, Mayor John Heilman and Councilwoman Abbe Land came to officially open the arts fair. Fair organizers thanked Heilman and Land for the city gifting them the use of the auditorium. Heilman replied that it was not a gift from the city, but rather “it’s a gift to us to have you here.”

Heilman said he hoped the Erotic Arts Fair would continue to be in West Hollywood for years to come and added that he would do anything possible to make sure it stays in the city.

Land commented on how thrilled she has been over the years to see the fair grow, first in Plummer Park and now in West Hollywood Park. Noticing how the entire auditorium was filled with artists and exhibitors, Land added, “We need to find a bigger venue for you.”


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LA Weekly Blog about Erotic Art Fair Controversy

Events of Interest, For the Record, Tom News around the World

Despite Controversy, No Children Harmed at Tom of Finland’s West
Hollywood Erotic Art Fair

By Patrick Range McDonald, Mon., Mar. 28 2011 @ 1:15PM
Physical Pictorial.jpg
Issues of “Physique Pictorial” were sold at WeHo-LA Erotic Art Fair

The 16th Annual West Hollywood – Los Angeles Erotic Art Fair went off without a hitch this past weekend, and the kids, as far as we know, are perfectly alright.

Earlier in the year, members of the West Hollywood Arts and Cultural Affairs Commission refused to put their seal of approval on the event, saying that children could somehow be harmed.

The commission’s decision stunned the gay community in Los Angeles and caused an uproar.

West Hollywood City Council members eventually overrode the commission, allowing the erotic art fair, which is sponsored by the Tom of Finland Foundation, to take place at West Hollywood Park Auditorium.

West Hollywood Patch reporter James Mills notes that folks at the fair were still concerned about the controversy.

“The most alarming thing is none of the people on that commission are our enemies. They are one of us,” Dan Berkowitz, co-chair of the West Hollywood Lesbian and Gay Advisory Board and a former president of the Tom of Finland Foundation, told WeHo Patch. “When the LGBT community is attempting to censor its own … things are really in trouble.”

Commission members are appointed to their posts by West Hollywood City Council members John Heilman, Abbe Land, John Duran, Jeff Prang, and John D’Amico.

During the recent West Hollywood City Council race, longtime incumbents John Heilman and Abbe Land, who were running for re-election when the erotic art fair controversy broke out, were criticized for helping to de-gay West Hollywood.

The city’s poor handling of the erotic art fair was cited as an example by critics.

This weekend, Heilman and Land made personal appearances at the fair, which featured many drawings and paintings of naked men.

Original issues of old school gay magazines from the early 1960s such as Physique Pictorial were also for sale.

The crowd was made up of mostly gay men in their thirties, forties, and older, with volunteers always standing outside the doors leading into the fair.

The few children who live in West Hollywood — U.S. Census figures show the city is not, and has never been, a place filled with kids — were not allowed anywhere near the auditorium.

There have been no public reports of anyone being offended by the erotic art fair.

Mr. L.A. Leather 2011 Leo Iriarte, however, did make a triumphant appearance.

Contact Patrick Range McDonald at pmcdonald@laweekly.com.


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SOLD OUT Clothing – Tom of Finland Fashion Show

Events of Interest, Tom News around the World


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The Collectors. Curated by Elmgreen & Dragset / Danish Pavilion / Venice Biennial 2009

Events of Interest, Tom News around the World

For the 53rd Venice Biennale, the Danish and Nordic Pavilions host “The Collectors“, an exhibition curated and staged by artist duo Elmgreen & Dragset. With contributions from twenty-four international artists, Michael Elmgreen and Ingar Dragset transform the Danish and Nordic Pavilions into domestic environments, and invite the audience to be guests in them.

The artists and designers included in the exhibition are: Thora Dolven Balke, Massimo Bartolini, Hernan Bas, Guillaume Bijl, Maurizio Cattelan, Elmgreen & Dragset, Pepe Espaliú, Tom of Finland, Simon Fujiwara, Han & Him, Laura Horelli, Martin Jacobson, William E. Jones, Terence Koh, Jani Leinonen, Klara Lidén, Jonathan Monk, Nico Muhly, Norway Says, Henrik Olesen, Nina Saunders, Vibeke Slyngstad, Sturtevant and Wolfgang Tillmans. Other features Fredrik Sjöberg’s Fly Collection, Massimo De Carlo’s Porcelain Collection, Collected Etnographica, Real Estate Agents performed by Helen Statman & Trevor Stuart.

The Collectors is not a group show in the conventional sense. The pavilions will undergo a radical reconstruction, and more than twenty artists and designers of all ages, ranging from established to emerging ones, will contribute to creating a different kind of exhibition format, one that will appear closer to a film set than a conventional art display. The curators aim to establish a unique atmosphere of intimacy with their staged exhibition; one that can run counter to the official spectacle and formal nature of the Biennale – and, in close collaboration with the participating artists and designers, they hope to circumvent all the usual competitive aspects of the larger art event.

The Collectors. Curated by Elmgreen & Dragset. Danish Pavilion, 53rd Venice Biennial 2009. La Biennale di Venezia 2009: Fare Mondi (Making Worlds). Professional Preview, June 4, 2009.



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Launch of Tom of Finland T-shirt Line

Events of Interest, For the Record, Tom News around the World

Exclusive Launch Party
& Fashion Show
@ 11:00pm
Wednedsay, March 23, 2011
8857 Santa Monica Boulevard, West Hollywood, 90069
Presented by Stefano Rosso & Hot Rod


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Turku Online

Events of Interest, Friends of Tom, Tom News around the World


Tom of Finland alias Touko Laaksonen (1920-1991) is coming home!

The Homotopia organisation (from Liverpool in the UK) will provide Turku with an extensive collection of Tom of Finland’s works, from sketches made during his early years to later works. The works in the exhibition will come from the Tom of Finland Foundation collection in Los Angeles.

For details , visit the following:

Turku 2011 Programme: Tom of Finland

Logomo Exhibition Center  

Tom of Finland Retrospective 2011 Facebook group http://www.facebook.com/tom2011

For more press and comments on this exhibit, click here


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Beaux Arts Magazine – Tom of Finland

Events of Interest, Tom News around the World
Sex and BD Published: January 2011  

TOM OF FINLAND (Finnish, 1920 – 1991), Untitled, 1964, Graphite on paper, 11.31” x 9.38”, Tom of Finland Foundation Permanent Collection #64.04, © 2011 Tom of Finland Foundation

Fine Arts continues its exploration of the “ninth art” by addressing in this special issue of the relationship between sex and comics. There are few authors and genres that have little, one way or another, touched on the subject, be it with the elegance of a Manara erotic or Pratt and activism Twisted Sisters of, or with a scathing humor Reiser. Major authors in the industry oh so productive small sizes and Edifumetti Elvifrance and manga, through the vein diversion and hilarious parody, eroticism runs through the world of comic creation.It is this story that is told here, not to mention his entire party down and censored, with a selection of unpublished drawings ever shown.

There is a four-page spread of the work of Tom of Finland and an illustrated article, “Gays et Lesbiennes”.

Il est peu d’auteurs et peu de genres qui n’aient, d’une façon ou d’une autre, abordé le sujet, que ce soit avec l’élégance érotique d’un Manara ou d’un Pratt, avec le militantisme des Twisted Sisters, ou avec l’humour décapant d’un Reiser. Des grands auteurs à toute l’industrie oh combien productive des petits formats de Edifumetti et Elvifrance et des mangas, en passant par la veine hilarante du détournement et du pastiche, l’érotisme traverse tout l’univers de la création dessinée. C’est cette histoire qui est ici racontée, sans oublier toute sa partie cachée et censurée, avec une sélection inédite de dessins jamais montrés.

BeauxArts magazine


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City of West Hollywood Votes to Again Co-sponsor 16th Annual Erotic Art Fair Weekend

Events of Interest, Tom News around the World

The 16th annual Tom of Finland Foundation West Hollywood – Los Angeles Erotic Art Fair Weekend (WHLA EAFW) will take place March 25-27, 2011.

Tom of Finland Foundation (ToFF) has been a nonprofit Educational Archive for the Gay community for over a quarter century and is very proud to have the City of West Hollywood as the Co-sponsor. ToFF thanks the Honorable John Heilman, Mayor of West Hollwood, John Duran, Mayor Pro Tempore and all Councilmembers for their support since 2003. A special thanks goes to Paul Arevalo, City Manager, for his involvement.

The WHLA EAFW provides locals and visitors to an excursion full of activities. It kicks off with a public reception at Foundation HQ, TOM House in Echo Park, for artists, collectors and all who enjoy art. ToFF will have many new works from its permanent collection on exhibit throughout the House for this opening. It is also an opportunity to visit Tom’s attic studio along with the rest of the three floors of this early 20th century residence/museum.

The Erotic Art Fair is open both Saturday and Sunday in West Hollywood Park’s auditorium. On both Saturday and Sunday afternoons, at the Fair, panel discussions and life drawing demos, with artists and models, will be featured.

The Weekend provides a unique opportunity for artists from around the world to display and sell their work to the public. The educational value of the Fairs is enormous: The Foundation’s staff curates the Fair, to ensure a variety of styles and media.

The 2011 Erotic Art Fair expects to host more than 45 artists from around the globe. Virtually every medium is represented — painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, mixed media and digital work. The Foundation strives to include work representing all genders and sexual orientations. When the Foundation presented the first Fair in 1995, it was the only event of its kind; the Fair continues to be one of the largest events in the world dedicated to providing erotic artists an opportunity to showcase their work.

The 16th Annual West Hollywood / Los Angeles Erotic Art Fair Weekend is also sponsored by:

-        City of West Hollywood Lesbian & Gay Advisory Board
-        West Hollywood Marketing & Visitors Bureau
-        Consulate General of Finland in Los Angeles
-        Los Angeles Leather Coalition
-        Los Angeles Band of Brothers
-        Ramada Plaza West Hollywood

The Foundation thanks Louie Pacheco, Mike Gerle, Sister Unity, Tom Trafelet, Daddy Bo and slavegirl debbie, George Scileppi, Will Hildreth, Jacob Prieto and Jim Boyle, Dan Berkowitz, Ivy Bottini, Ken Hurst, David Keith Webster, Philip Hoskins, Steve Ganzell and Desiree Sol for their enormous support.

WHLA EAFW Details.


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