Recently I tried to join an online Facebook reading group, although I recognized their conservative leanings, their thoughtful discussions around the Great Books encouraged me to follow them. I was, perhaps naively, taken aback when I received an automated reply that my Facebook page did not meet Community Standards. The post that drew their ire was the one above, posted pre-scribbled fig leaf-although I am pretty confident, that even with self censorship I would still not meet their standards.
Although taken aback, I really can understand their position from a conservative Christian perspective. I have , rather boldly, sometimes with a puerile inclination to provoke, lavishly depicted genitalia , specifically boy parts, in my work.
Only the other day I was in discussion with a friend concerning my upcoming show In Fairyland and the question was raised as to how I wanted to alert the public to my “x-rated” work (the argument being to shelter children). That statement I must say was more startling for it came not from a religious conservative . I was taken aback once again.
Startling because although my work might technically warrant an x-rating for its nudity it isn’t pornographic. These instances of how my work is perceived (misperceived?) has left me pondering, what do I think about depicting the human form in its un-neutered form? For me, aside from some boyish visual pranks, the nude male form is inherently vulnerable and exposed.
My nightmare state as this self portrait attests.
I’ve tried, too bluntly perhaps, to explore this vulnerable existential state. Perhaps unsuccessfully.
I have of late finding myself questioning as to whether or not to include a peen or not, is it necessary to make my point or to gratify my aesthetic vision? Sometimes it is, often it isn’t. I don’t find this to be restrictive self-censorship but rather a more discerning , aware approach to making.
But I must say rather disappointing as I’ve fancy myself to have mastered textile willies.
The following is a gallery sure to offend Community Standards, please rate it an “X”.
New drawing just completed, I believe this may be it . I’ve depicted the first seven Labors but to be frank , aside from our hero’s wrestling match with the fearsome Cerberus, I’m not particularly interested in drawing them . I’ll wait and see if inspiration strikes . But for now the first Seven:
1- the Nemean Lion , slay the poor thing
2-Lernean Hydra, slay that poor thing
3-Ceryneian Hind, capture that poor thing
4- Erymanthian Boar, capture that poor thing
5- Augean Stables, clean that filthy place
6-Stymphalian Birds, kill those man-eating things
7- Cretan Bull, capture that randy thing
The Labors of Herakles
Sanguine pencil with chalk highlights on toned paper
18 by 24 inches
When and if I return to the balance of his Labors I will continue with the continuous narrative composition as a diptych.