Summer and Smoke

September 4, 2008  |  By
Filed under: 151 3rd

Dear Reader,

This is Tammy. Hey look! Summer’s gone up in smoke and it’s back-to-school time. And although my academic pursuits were stopped short many years ago by an ergonomic accident, September still brings with it a pain in my gut. Summer vacation drifts into a landslide of work and anxiety. Will my coworkers laugh at my back-to-school Toughskins and non-name-brand sneakers AGAIN this year? I ignore their petty, school-kid crap and plunge head first into my work. Thankfully, Stein and my boss, curator of media arts Rudolf Frieling, are keeping me busy with a lot of assignments. Stein even proposed I make my little postings here a regular column. (Name options: True Random Thoughts, Non Sequitur, Obvious Observations.) I’ve also been gearing up for the Art of Participation show, opening in November, editing interviews with Alexander Hahn and Yves Netzhammer, and some more mundane projects, like hiding the filing I didn’t do this year and reorganizing the office to confuse Rudolf now that he’s back from vacation. I am seriously busy, but I do have priorities. So, with that in mind, I’ve been checking out the summer shows, and I noticed something peculiar….

lee miller is cruisey 2
Lee Miller is cruisey. Or maybe it’s just the third-floor photography gallery in general. But I’ve been in the exhibition three times now, and each time I happen upon some kind of girl-on-girl sexual tension. Let it be known that my gaydar is technically flawed, but still, if I can identify this ancient ritual, it must be painfully obvious to everyone else. I have some questions about this: Is Lee Miller a gay icon? Or do girls just think she’s hot? Does an artist have to be beautiful or interesting biographically in order to be successful? If so, does this apply more so for women? What would Frida say? Would the cross-dressing, bisexual Frida notice these things too? Would Frida cruise Lee? Would Lee cruise Frida? Could they see past their obvious attraction for each other and just be friends?

10 Comments

  1. Pickles Says:

    If Lee Miller is not a gay icon, let’s make her one. Starting NOW.

  2. Pickles Says:

    let’s make paper dolls of Lee Miller and Frida and mash them together. we can dress them up in each other’s clothes.

  3. reuben Says:

    Viva La Tammy!

  4. shapiro Says:

    where can i get one of those gaydar guns?

  5. Andrew Says:

    I am going to read Tammy’s column more frequently than the New York effing times. This is big news!!

    Also sorry to be daft but what-all exactly now does it mean for someone to look cruisey? Not Tom Cruisey, ha!? Or I guess it seems like from what you’re saying that for someone to be cruisey means gay people think they’re hot, or iconic. But I always thought cruising was… like… gay people going places to find “partners”??????? So you’re saying Lee Miller…the photographer… in the exhibition…. looks like she’s looking for gay times somewheres????

    Oh my god sorry I just expelled myself from the fictional all-girl high school contained within this blog-comment.

    Bye!!!!

  6. Andrew Says:

    Oh now I get it. I thought the girl-on-girl action was happening within Miller’s photographs. But it is happening among the museum’s patrons. Who are cruisily eroticized by Miller’s cruisey-ass photos. I am never leaving another comment on another world-class art museum’s website’s blog again. Have a Santa Cruzey weekend!! I hate myself!!!!!

  7. Scott Says:

    ha ha ha ha ha ha… Toughskins!!! geez, our moms were cheap.

  8. Pickles Says:

    What’s weirdest about this blog post is that the photo of Lee Miller looks STRIKINGLY similar to Ruth Fortin, Tammy’s very own mother. Not kidding.

    Homoedipal much?

  9. tammy Says:

    my mom’s way hotter than Lee Miller

  10. viv Says:

    i would like to think that i have a pretty keen and intact gaydar, and i totally picked up some homoerotic vibes from madame miller. all the queer ladies i know are all about her, too. she’s def. on my list of ‘ladies to hang out in bathtubs taking pictures with.’

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