Four Perspectives

Miguel Reyes (L) shows his art, while artist and Foundation Board member Valentine (far R) shows off his erotic chess set

Fair Grows Again!

by Mike Maifeld

Since its beginning 4 years ago, the Erotic Art Fair keeps getting BIGGER. In `98 we were able to accommodate 60 artists (barely) and were forced (and we loved it) to expand our display space by one additional room, representing a total 30% increase in viewing area. Through greater advertising and promotion we realized an increase in traffic flow to over 1,100 paying viewers, up from about 700 the previous year.

In a purely capitalistic view, the weekend grossed almost $60,000 compared with $45,000 brought in last year, an increase of 30%. After paying the bills, the Foundation netted just over $6,000 to fund its many other endeavors in support of erotic art.

We are already trying to anticipate another significant jump in artists, public attendance and revenue for next year. But that's the kind of problem that we like to solve.

The weekend was produced with the help of over 100 volunteers without whom the weekend could not be produced at such a professional level and such an affordable cost to artists and the public alike.

Other highlights during both days of the fair included live artists' models of both sexes including some notable names such as Austin Black and Tom Packard (not to mention a short stint by the Foundation's new administrator Michael Maifeld). Several artists sold pieces during and after the weekend while others such as Darel “Boy” Smith received commissions. Many artists made gallery contacts for future exhibitions. Phillip Hitchcock, was filmed by a German film crew as he made a cast of a model's torso. Philip and his work will be seen on prime time TV in Germany. And lastly September films of England was on hand during the Fair, filming artists, live models and president of the Foundation, Durk Dehner. So it was truly a global event for all these erotic artists and art-lovers.

Ever vigilant volunteers Mike Goldie and Cathie Bagwell watch the record-breaking take at the door

by Bill Schmeling, a.k.a. The Hun,
Auxiliary Board of Directors Member

I've had the privilege of exhibiting at all four of the TOFF Erotic Art Fairs to date. The event just gets bigger and bigger and better and better! The volunteer staff has this major event down to a science. Their quiet but constant availability throughout the weekend - for trouble shooting, problem solving, booth sitting, food service and money handling - is a real plus! Hats off to all the Foundation volunteers! Special sincere and salivating thanks to all the live models — Woof! More! More!

Every year I look forward to renewing acquaintances with all the old dinosaurs of erotic art — who shall go nameless, but you know who they are — those old codgers nearly as old as I am, who have been producing and publishing since the earth was cooling. I am forever amazed at the new media they boldly attack and the exciting results they create. No laurel-sitters, they!

A special delight is seeing all the new talent just breaking into the fellowship, indeed, taking it by storm! Whenever I hear folks lament “All the real erotic artists are gone now!” I tell `em to attend the next Erotic Art Fair. Many personal favorites are indeed gone, but real erotic artists are bursting out of the woodwork with more excellence, genius, creativity and promise than we have the eyes to recognize! It was a special treat to have both Teddy of Paris and Xavier Gicquel with us this year! And to realize that all these `kids' have decades and decades still to go! Certainly keeps any dinosaurs around high on their tippy toes!

Pictured above: The Hun (R) at his booth with his partner Roland, always a favorite stop at the Fair

by Dan Berkowitz

Volunteer model Maurice does his part for the cause

So, did I enjoy making phone calls to more than 100 potential volunteers, then follow-up calls to the people who actually worked during the weekend? Well, not really. But after seven years booking guests for a national TV talk show, working the phones isn't something new. I'd already experienced the phenomenon in which the headset becomes a growth on your ear. And after you've been yelled at by U.S. Senators, famous actors, and ordinary schmucks angry that you haven't put them on TV, asking people to spend time working an Erotic Art Weekend is a piece of cake (only two people yelled at me - I think they had to uphold their image of fierceness.) Besides, it was all for a good cause. After all, if the Weekend was successful, the Foundation would help a bunch of artists and hopefully make a little money at the same time.

But the real reason I volunteered was purely selfish - I saw it as a chance to meet more people. It's been four years since I moved to Los Angeles, but there are times I still feel like the new guy in town. Only two of the names on the volunteer list Durk gave me were at all familiar. And as some one who has no problem performing in front of 2,000 people but is usually too shy to start a conversation with someone at a party, it's great to have an excuse to talk to people. The bad part? The jerks - unfortunately, quite a few - who never return phone calls. Not to mention the Jerks with a capital J - fortunately only a very few - who said they'd be there but never showed up. The best part? Getting to meet dozens of people who were fun to work with and whom I hope I'll get to know better. Most fun: matching names with faces, finding out that the guys I've run into in L.A., New York, and San Francisco actually have last names — what a concept!

Support erotic art and meet some great people in the bargain! To see what exciting Foundation activities are currently in need of Volunteers, call 213-250-1685.

by Mary Jane Richardson, A first time and permanent (if you'll have me) volunteer.

Thanks for a great weekend! As a first time volunteer, I approached the experience with a certain amount of apprehension. I think it took all of about two minutes to feel right at home!

Being assigned to the concession stand enabled me to meet and greet the majority of everyone involved. What an interesting, eclectic, enjoyable cross-section of people. Many of these people I hope to see again. To try to give my impression of all the works would take pages and pages. Suffice it to say that the paintings, sculptures and all variety of things in between were not only fascinating to view but actually inspired me to attempt some of the processes to see if I could create the same result. (Unfortunately, my finished projects don't compare.)

Again, thanks for a great time and I look forward to being involved for many years to come.


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"My whole life long I have done nothing but interpret my dreams of ultimate masculinity, and draw them." From an interview with Patrick Sarfati published in Rebel — Tom of Finland