COMMUNITY GALLERY | EXHIBITION THROUGH MAY

BEARTOONIST OF SAN FRANCISCO: SKETCHING AN EMERGING SUBCULTURE FEATURING THE WORK OF FRAN FRISCH

Illustration by Fran Frisch (1989)

 

A new exhibition featuring the work of cartoonist Fran Frisch as a starting point for exploring the community of bears, a subculture that developed in the 1980s to celebrate older, larger, hairier, ruggedly masculine gay men who were largely excluded from standards of attractiveness in gay popular culture. The bear identity created positive self-images and an affirming subculture beyond the narrow concepts of gay masculinity and eroticism that prevailed at the time.

Covering the mid-1980s to the mid-2000s, the exhibition will focus on San Francisco, one of the key places where the bear community first emerged before becoming an international phenomenon. “Beartoonist of San Francisco” will include original art by Frisch, along with photographs, objects and ephemera from the collection of curator Jeremy Prince and the archives of the GLBT Historical Society.

MAIN PHOTO: Bear Pride at The Lone Star Saloon (circa 1995) Chalk drawing by Fran Frisch