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Enjoy it while it's hot.- Wallpaper Magazine
Including work by John S. Barrington, Cecil Beaton, Guy Burch, Basil Clavering, Rotimi Fani-Kayode, Bill Green, David Gwinnutt, Angus McBean, Patrick Procktor, Ajamu X and many more.
This exhibition highlights key areas of London which were a focus for men seeking out men to photograph. It maps out a territory of risk and possibility across Highgate, between Chelsea and Wellington Barracks, in Soho, Brixton, Portobello and Euston.
Catalogues, print ordering sheets, personal albums, magazines and publications explore how these photographs were circulated, exchanged and shared.
While the 1955 Wolfenden Report and the 1967 Sexual Offences Act marked the partial decriminalisation of gay sexual activity, prompting gay liberation and the fight for social equality; any depiction of male nudity which suggested homosexuality remained subject to the 1857 Obscene Publications Act.
A Hard Man is Good to Find! is curated by Alistair O'Neill, professor of Fashion History and Theory at Central Saint Martins (University of the Arts London).
The exhibition will be on show alongside the Deutsche Börse Photography Foundation Prize 2023.
Whilst this is an exhibition of queer pictures, it is important to note that not all the photographers or models can be claimed as queer subjects. It also acknowledges that language evolves and while queer is employed today for its inclusivity, the reclaiming of the derogatory term can sit uneasily for the generation subjected to it; the term homosexual can be similarly problematic for a younger generation.
As a number of the works are historical documents, it has not been possible to identify all individuals represented in the exhibition. We welcome any amendments or additions.