LACMA, Getty Embrace Gay Sadomasochism, Throw Down on Kinky Robert Mapplethorpe Archive Worth Over $30 Million

Kinky Robert Mapplethorpe Archive Worth Over $30 Million

Robert Mapplethorpe (right) and his lover, art collector Sam Wagstaff, in 1974

Robert Mapplethorpe’s work — mostly black and white, mostly from the grittiest cultural back-alleys of the 1970s and ’80s — is either high art or expensive pornography, depending on who you talk to.

As of today, though, the L.A. County Museum of Art and the Getty have made their collective position clear: In the first-ever joint acquisition between the two museums, well over $30 million in Mapplethorpe photos, sculptures and random paperstuffs have been secured in the Getty vaults in black archival boxes, waiting to unleash their incredible kinkiness upon the (already oversexed) Los Angeles public.

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