Totally Gay for Sports opened at The Lodge Gallery Friday night with an irreverent fusion of sports aesthetics, homoerotic flair and a cooler full of Budweiser and Gatorade. The exhibition, curated by artist Paul Brainard, manages to invoke all connotations of the titular phrase, from an expression of extreme hetero allegiance to the Hellenistic man love implicit in the activity for centuries. The smart intersection of sports, art, and sex was uniquely funny, startling and visually captivating.
At the entrance, the title of the exhibition and its accompanying logo was emblazoned on the wall, a visual play on the CBS logo but flipped sideways to be less eye and more clit. A rainbow bejeweled football by Evie Falci sitting atop a pedestal covered in astroturf served as a surreal gateway to a variety of works in different mediums further afield.
Stopping in front of a dazzling technicolor piece combining a cherub, a gilded shotgun, scenes of American wildlife, a jester of sorts and many tennis balls midair, we were introduced to Lane Twitchell, whose impossibly intricate cutout work also appears in the show. He triumphantly proclaimed that the painting (by Peter Daverington) was definitely “the gayest painting here.” With its electric swathes of color, man-centric details and combination of disparate techniques cavorting licentiously together within the same work, we had to agree.
Opposite the room was a painting by T M Davy of perky bruised cheeks and the offending baseball beneath them, which seemed to pair perfectly with Chris Caccamise‘s bat and black and orange balls nearby. Eric White‘s Huey Lewis Sports parody also caught our eye, as did the curator’s painting, “Half-Time Show”, a composite of the vulgar/sexy spectrum of white trash heavy metal sporting signifiers that required a momentary timeout to pick our jaws up off the floor. The snacks (gummy hamburgers and cola bottles in red plastic baskets) and the orange drink set out in plastic cups clinched the ballpark aesthetic and made the experience complete. Athletes and aesthetes: this one’s for you.
Now through January 12th.