February 14 - April 4, 2007
Los Angeles, CA

Antebellum Gallery

The Beauty of Black Sexuality

Marc Baptiste
Afro Art

Featuring: Belasco, Alva Bernadin, George Pitts, Renee Cox,
Marc Baptiste, John Howard and Carlos Batts.

CLOSING PARTY: Wednesday, April 4, 7 PM

Image by Belasco
Various themed salons, will be presented weekly during the exhibition culminating with the closing party on April 4th - featuring the artist Belasco, in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. on the 43rd anniversary of his passing.

Co-currated by artists Carlos Batts and Rick Castro.


GEORGE PITTS is Director of Photography at LIFE Magazine. From 1993-2004, he was the Director of Photography at Vibe Magazine. He is also a photographer, painter, and writer.

Mr. Pitts photographs have been published in The New York Times Magazine, New York Magazine, Esquire, Details, Clam, Premiere, Spin, Talk, Raygun, Paper, Nerve, Manhattan File, Voidek, Werk, Tally Ho, Stereotype, Gotham, Vice, E Design, Graphics Photo Annual 2000, American Photography, Masterminds of Mode: International Fashion Festival in Japan, (2000), Nerve: The New Nude, (Chronicle Books), and an upcoming compilation on human scars, tentatively entitled, Scars, (Great Britain); and The New Erotic Photography (Taschen, 2007).

As Director of Photography at Vibe magazine, he received numerous honors in Photography including The SPD Gold Award in 1994 and 2004; an Alfred Eisenstaedt Award nomination for Photo Essays in 1998; selection in American Photography volumes 10 - 19; and received three National Magazine Award (ASME) nominations in Photography: 1994, 1995, and 2001. In 2002, Vibe magazine received the National Magazine Award (the ASME) in General Excellence for 2001. In 2006, LIFE magazine was nominated for an ASME for the Best Celebrity Cover of 2006. In 2006, he was awarded The Lucie Award for Picture Editor Of The Year for his work with LIFE Magazine.

Mr. Pitts was named one of the nineteen Movers and Shakers for the Future, (1995) by American Photo magazine. In 1995, he was instated in the Who's Who Among African Americans edition. In 1999, he was selected for the IBC (International Biographical Centre, Cambridge, England), Outstanding People of the 20th Century volume. In 2001, he served as one of the judges for ICP's Eugene Smith Award in Photojournalism, and was on the Nominating Board for ICP's 2001, Infinity Awards in Photography. In 1973 he was a Fulbright Recipient to Great Britain in Painting. In 1972 he received The Painting 1st Prize at The Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture.

Mr. Pitts also teaches courses entitled Picturing Sexuality, and The Senior Thesis Seminar, at The Parsons School of Design. He has also taught at The School of Visual Arts.

ALVA BERNADINE was born in Grenada, West Indies and moved to Britain at the age of 6 to London. At the age of 10 Alva bought a toy camera that took blurred pictures, some of which his mother still has in the family album.

Alva became seriously interested in photography at the age of 21. Alva's first pictures were of London tourist spots and the next year Alva started practicing his present style. Alva is self-taught and has never been an assistant.

Alva has worked mainly in the editorial field for the last 18 years. Alva has photographed for numerous magazines and has had many profiles of his work in countries such as France, Spain, Italy, USA, Australia, Germany and, his home country, Great Britain.

In 1987, Alva was joint winner the Vogue/Sotheby's Cecil Beaton Award for his series of shoe pictures entitled The Fetish. In 2001 his book Bernadinism: How to Dominate Men and Subjugate Women was published. In 2002, Alva won Erotic Photographer of the year in Britain.

BELASCO currently lives in Los Angeles. Belasco began creating erotic art in the early 1990's for various club rags and small press publications. He went on to create chapbooks featuring erotic stories and paint the covers for the first three books in the B-Boy Blues series of novels by James Earl Hardy. In the later part of 1997, Belasco's work was included in the Meatmen anthologies from Leyland Press. In 2000, Cleis press released a collection of Belasco's work in The Brothers of New Essex. Since then Belasco continues to create original artwork and publish his own brand of afro-homo-erotic illustrations and stories.

JOHN HOWARD was born in Austin, Texas in 1962. Howard went to the University of Kentucky from 1982- 1985.

Howard is the gonzo cartoonist of choice for the rowdier adult magazines of America, like Buttman, Screw, and Hustler. Howard is legend in the counterculture comic world. and is the man behind the Horny Bikers Slut comic series, which featured various amped Amazons. muscle-bound native American's in bikinis and she-males with attitude.

Howard recently branched out into adult video directing, with titles like Tales from the Crack, (a live action pop art version of the comic starring Belladonna) and Vault of Whores. In his films, Howard merges comic panels into live scenarios, proving there's life in the comic book genre yet.
Some of Howard's comics include - Leaping Weasel, Deathman, Horny Biker Slut and She-Male Trouble.


CARLOS BATTS wears many hats very well; photographer, filmmaker, curator. Over the past 15 years he as taken the DIY mantra to heart documenting a variety of sophisticated subcultures; music, life style and art. Painter, stylist, make up artist, and set designer have all been titles he has carried through out the creation of his vast body of work. Carols has honed and refined his artistic sensibilities into a balanced mosaic of high fashion and photo-collages that encompass his entire vision.?

Among an ever-expanding universe of other forums in addition to photography, Batts has directed short films, and curated? Street Art exhibits by the likes of Mike GIANT, Rich Colman, Kime Buzelli, Axis, Chris Lindig and Photography exhibits by Chris Haston, Steve Diet Goedde, Dave Naz, Patrick Hoelck, Rick Castro, Estavan Oriel, and Andres Serrano.

Batts is a contributor to these magazines: Swindle, WARP (Japan), Vibe, Maxim, URB, WYWS, Garage (Italy). Clientele: NBC, WB Television, Shoes, NBC, Digi Design, Sky Spirits, Ballantine Books, DC Comics, AGFA Film, Calee Clothing (Japan), Third Rail Clothing, Fleer Trading Cards, Century Media Records, New Line Cinema, Warner Brothers, Abacus Records, Relapse Records and Reptilian Records.

Musical artists photographed: Danzig, Snoop Dog, Mark Mothersbaugh, DJ QUIK, AFROBOTS, Radiation 4, City High, Crystal Method, Z TRIP, Ozomatli, Ginuwine, The Distillers, Pig Destroyer, godHead, Ink & Dagger, The Dwarves, LABTEKWON, Dog Fashion Disco, Nikka Costa, Nebula, AWOL ONE, ONE BLOCK RADIUS and Mastodon.

RICK CASTRO is an independent filmmaker and photographer. Castro's work explores the world of fetish and fringes of sex culture. His work has been published in artist editions, exhibitions and institutions worldwide. Rick co-directed and wrote Hustler White and the documentary Plushies & Furries for MTV.

Castro's photography is in the permanent collections of The Alfred Kinsey Institute and The Tom of Finland Foundation. His books and zines are archived at the UCLA library, and The Leather Museum in Chicago. Castro has photographed portraits of the Dalai Lama (sipping tea), Gore Vidal, Peter Berlin, Alan Poul (producer of Six Feet Under) and his longtime muse, Tony Ward. Castro owns and runs Antebellum Gallery.

Antebellum Gallery
Gallery Hours: Wednesday - Saturday, Noon - 6:00 PM -- or by appointment.
1643 N. Las Palmas Ave., Hollywood CA, 90028  Map 

Rick Castro
Website  323.856.5818  E-mail

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“I almost never draw a completely naked man. He has to have at least a pair of boots or something on. To me, a fully dressed man is more erotic than a naked one. A naked man is, of course beautiful, but dress him in black leather or a uniform — ah, then he is more than beautiful, then he is sexy!”
— Tom of Finland