Hi, it's me, Efrain John Gonzalez, your favorite wild and crazy photographer/archivst.
I want to invite you to the看Public Opening of ON OUR BACKS: The Revolutionary Art of Queer Sex Work, Curated by Alexis Heller, at the Leslie-Lohman Museum, on September 28th, 2019, from 2 to 6 pm. This exhibition explores the history of queer sex work culture, and it's intimate ties to art and activism. Coined by bisexual activist,Carol Leigh, aka. The Scarlot Harlot in 1978, 'sex work' is broadly defined as exchanging sex or erotic services for gain and connotes personal agency and politicized action. More than a portrait of life at the margins, what emerges in this exhibit is a demonstration of the use of pornography as a deft tool for queer and trans liberation.

Come and join me Saturday the 28th in SoHo and see the work I will have on display!
Leslie-Lohman Museum - 26 Wooster Street, New York, NY (Between Grand & Canal Streets)
The wall mural is from a photo I took in the Meatpacking district, on Washington st and Little West 12th Street at night,
a time exposure with a Century Graflex camera with a 120 film back, circa 1980


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DSC09966 a-Gonzolez149web z-Wall H & I with layout#B1    
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I first became aware of the presence of leather bars in Greenwich Village and the meatpacking industry while driving a taxicab at night in NYC in 1975 till 1978. I would see the leather clad men walking down the dark streets of the meatpacking 看at night, on their way to gay fetish bars like The Spike, Badlands, and The Eagle, and I was drawn to this forbidden sexuality. I began to capture the life at night with a Nikon camera loaded with Tri-X film. At first I covered the streets, shooting street people, trans sex workers, the old brick factories with meathooks, and the traffic at night. Walking those empty streets was like being at the end of the world. You were all alone on deserted streets, no cars, no people, just silence and a feeling of lost isolation. So I walked those scary streets and tried to capture that isolation on film. Then in 1980 I discovered the one and only Hellfire Club. It was located in an old decaying, civil war era, under the street vault, and I would go there every看Friday看and看Saturday看night, playing in the back-rooms, using the glory-holes, finding all kinds of sex, love and passion, staying till 3, 4, 5 o'clock in the morning and sleeping late on看Sunday. I began to visit more places, like J's, Badlands on West St, and gay porno houses scattered up and down West st. In the years between 1970 and 2002 the meat packing district became the central hub for the city蘗s queer and underground sex and S&M fetish culture and creative art. If you wanted something kinky, you went to the meatpacking district which started on 14th Street and Ninth Ave and stretched out to the abandoned piers and down to Christopher St. If you looked around hard enough, you could fuck, spank, eat, dress, fist, piss, get pissed on, dress up, dress down, change genders, get fucked, drink, smoke, and just plain hang out to your heart蘗s content in the many crazy places that found a home among the old brick factories of this industrial wasteland. This small district was home to many of the city蘗s top sex and fetish clubs. Their short walking distance to each other made it possible for each to cross pollinate each other and feed off the energy and diversity that they all brought to the district. The closeness of all those leather, trans, and fetish clubs in one small insular district created a critical mass that made the neighborhood alive with its own energy. And I wanted to capture it on film!

Come and see the show opening

2016 HellfirePress / The Underground Archive - Efrain John Gonzalez. All rights reserved. Perpetual copyright claimed.