12 Inches of Sin features sophisticated, intelligent, witty and provocative artworks from around the world. The juried exhibition explores eroticism and sensuality through the lens of contemporary art, with one twist: every piece submitted for consideration must not be larger than one foot square. This constriction of the art’s physical space creates a tension within the art itself, expanding the challenge inherent in each piece’s creation.
The exhibition fosters fresh and exciting work by both new and established artists, and provides art patrons with the opportunity to secure works of art from prestigious and emerging artists that embody both the cutting edge of today’s contemporary art world and the vast breadth of artistic expression.
Our reporters “lost” 192 wallets in cities around the world.
In each, we put a name with a cellphone number, a family photo, coupons, and business cards, plus the equivalent of $50. We “dropped” 12 wallets in each of the 16 cities we selected, leaving them in parks, near shopping malls, and on sidewalks. Then we watched to see what would happen.
Lauri Rokto/City of Helsinki Tourist & Convention Bureau
Wallets returned: 11 out of 12. Lasse Luomakoski, a 27-year-old businessman, found our wallet downtown. “Finns are naturally honest,” he said. “We are a small, quiet, closely-knit community. We have little corruption, and we don’t even run red lights.” In the working-class area of Kallio, a couple in their sixties said, “Of course we returned the wallet. Honesty is an inner conviction.”
TOM OF FINLAND (Finnish, 1920 – 1991), Untitled, 1962, Graphite on paper, Collection of Volker Morlock, © 1962 Tom of Finland Foundation
By the time the gay liberation movement swept through the United States in the late 1960s, both Tom of Finland and Bob Mizer were already well-known and widely celebrated as veritable pioneers of gay art. Decades before Stonewall Inn and the raid on the Black Cat Tavern these evocative and lusty representations of masculine desire and joyful, eager sex between men proliferated and were disseminated worldwide at a time when the closet was still very much the norm—there was no such thing as a gay community. If these artists were not ahead of their time, they might just have foreseen and even invented a time.
Bob Mizer & Tom of Finland November 2, 2013–January 26, 2014
THE MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART, LOS ANGELES