Sunday, 8 February 2009

225: Ralph Steadman in “Gay News”

from “Gay News” 1977

“Gay News” ran these illustrations to accompany a series of articles giving guidance for gay couples on legal and financial matters about the housing market. How on earth Steadman became involved in this I don’t know? It might possibly be some show of solidarity by Steadman aginst the forces of repression as symbolised by Mary Whitehouse's blasphemy lawsuit against "Gay News" which was in full swing at this time. I generally don’t include cartoons from gay magazines, but given the eminence of Ralph Steadman it seems silly to exclude this. Certainly it’s worth comparing the men in these four illos with the homosexuals from my last Ralph Steadman feature. The Caesar haircut sported by the one partner is some acknowledgment of a prevalent gay hairstyle from the period.

8 April 1977 – The necessary dance of discomfort to avoid greater embarrassment and shame when living in rented accommodation.

22 April 1977 – A fantastic means of projecting the banker’s anxiety about gay men

6 May 1977 – Gay gnomes – not very impressive, if I’m honest

20 May 1977 –A visual metaphor for entanglement, as a long life together stretches out and the newspaper headline heralds society’s progress

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