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Perry Brass
Perry Brass is the author of 19 books, including the bestselling, Ippy Gold Medal Award-winning guide The Manly Art of Seduction: How to Meet, Talk to, and Become Intimate With Anyone, which takes on the assumption that "men are not supposed to be seductive." His newest novel is King of Angels, a gay, Southern, Jewish coming-of-age novel set in Savannah, Ga., in 1963, the year John F. Kennedy was assassinated. It was a finalist for a 2013 Ferro-Grumley Award for LGBT fiction. His latest book is the controversial but very readable The Manly Pursuit of Desire and Love which asks the question: If you are what you eat, why aren't you what you desire?. He can be reached through his website,

Entries by Perry Brass

Perry Brass: The Manly Pursuit of Desire: John Singer Sargent, Portraits of Artists and Friends, at the Met

(1) Comments | Posted September 15, 2015 | 5:31 PM

"Douard and Marie-Louise Pailleron," courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum

The Metropolitan Museum has been hosting one of the great Sargent shows this fall; it will close on October 4, and believe me if you haven't run over to see it, do.

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The Manly Pursuit of Desire -- To Fall in Love in Birmingham, Alabama

(6) Comments | Posted August 13, 2015 | 5:07 PM

(Picture courtesy the Birmingham Museum of Art)

I have fallen in love in Birmingham, Alabama. Not something that I particularly thought would happen, but there's no other way to put it--because it is with a painting. I have to declare this right...

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Perry Brass: The Manly Pursuit of Desire: It Shoulda Been You

(0) Comments | Posted July 7, 2015 | 12:48 PM


Tyne Daly, Lisa Howard, Sierra Boggess, David Burtka and Harriet Harris in "It Shoulda Been You." Photo Credit: Andrew Eccles

It Shoulda Been You, the musical now playing for a limited time at the Brooks Atkinson Theater on W. 47th Street, is about...

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Perry Brass: The Manly Pursuit of Desire: Ronald Reagan, Jane Wyman and Nancy Davis

(0) Comments | Posted March 26, 2015 | 12:33 AM

Several important concepts or "lessons" come twisting through this new encyclopedically informative tome from Blood Moon Productions about the strange, twisted, alleged "love triangle" among Ronald ("Dutch") Wilson Reagan, the future 40th president of the Republic, Jane Wyman (née Sarah Jane Mayfield, later renamed, after a miserable adoption, Sarah Fulks),...

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The Manly Pursuit of Desire: Yevgeniy Fiks and 'The Lenin Museum' at CUNY's James Gallery

(4) Comments | Posted January 5, 2015 | 4:40 PM

Artist Yevgeniy Fiks in front of the "Lenin Museum" installation. Photo: Perry Brass

A kind of Russian mystery one would expect out of Gorky Park is unfolding at the James Gallery on the first floor of the CUNY Graduate Center on Fifth Avenue...

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Perry Brass: The Manly Pursuit of Desire: Eric Rhein: AIDS and The Hummingbird's Warrior

(1) Comments | Posted December 17, 2014 | 11:12 AM

Medicine Simplified, 1997, wire & paper, 24"x32"x3" by Eric Rhein

One of the most beautiful art experiences I know of in the New York area is completely free, in a gorgeous, amazingly comfortable setting, and will be on display until January 31, 2015....

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The Manly Pursuit of Desire: The "Classical Nude" Looks Back at You

(1) Comments | Posted November 3, 2014 | 2:13 PM

Paul Stone, Untitled, ca. 1960s, Pencil on brown paper, 12.25 x 9 in. Collection of Arthur Bennett Kouwenhoven.

Several ideas struck me while viewing the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art's current and very ambitious show "The Classical Nude" on display downtown...

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Perry Brass: The Manly Pursuit of Desire: Life Is A Show, Old Chum!

(1) Comments | Posted July 8, 2014 | 2:23 PM

(Alan Cumming as the Em-Cee in Cabaret, courtesy Polk and Company.)

I went to see Alan Cumming in Cabaret at the Roundabout Theater Company's venture at Studio 54 last night [July 3; Michelle Williams was unfortunately absent for this performance]....

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The Manly Pursuit of Desire: Charles James at His Splendid Met Museum Show: Sick!

(2) Comments | Posted June 25, 2014 | 1:47 PM

Models in evening gowns by Charles James, photographed by Cecil Beaton at French & Company.

One word immediately came to my mind looking at the head-turning displays of haute couture by the legendary Charles James at the Metropolitan Museum on a...

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The Manly Pursuit of Desire: Three Timely Awakenings at the Outsider Art Fair

(0) Comments | Posted May 12, 2014 | 2:49 PM

Henry Darger, from "In the Realm of the Unreal."

I had three very timely awakenings at this year's Outsider Art Fair, sponsored by the Museum of American Folk Art, in Chelsea, for five days ending on May 11. They were stunning, shaking me...

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The Manly Pursuit of Desire: Heat "Stroke" at the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art

(1) Comments | Posted April 25, 2014 | 5:35 PM

George Stravinos, The Bather, 1977, Pencil and gouache on paper, 10.25 x 10 in. Collection of Leo Paoletti.

There are three ways to look at the work in the new show at the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art: "Stroke, from...

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The Manly Pursuit of Desire: Pink Triangles: Vices and Verses From a Gay Lit Crowd

(1) Comments | Posted January 29, 2014 | 10:56 AM


First a little quiz:

A) What do Rock Hudson, Alfred Lunt, Lorenz Hart, Rudolph Nureyev, Dana Andrews, Montgomery Clift, Leonard Bernstein, Zachary Scott and Dan Dailey all have in common?

B) What do Maurice Chevalier, Gary Cooper, Leslie Howard, Fred...

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The Manly Pursuit of Desire: High Art and Low Sex All the Way Through Evening

(1) Comments | Posted December 4, 2013 | 1:04 PM


Young Australian filmmaker Rohan Spong's love letter to New York and a generation of young composers who died of AIDS, "All the Way Through Evening," opens at the Village East Cinema, 189 2nd Avenue at 12th Street, on...

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Europe Sleeping in the Nude: Sasha Schneider at the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art

(0) Comments | Posted November 8, 2013 | 7:22 PM

Sascha Schneider, "Triumph der Finsternis" ("Triumph of Darkness"), 1896, mixed media on canvas, from the collection of Hans-Gerd Röder (click to enlarge)

If you only see one gay art show this fall season (and I hope you'll see more than one), it's got to...

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Did AIDS Kill New York City Opera?

(13) Comments | Posted September 30, 2013 | 8:36 PM

When I think about the death of New York City Opera -- and it will be dead soon, if it's not already -- I think about another death. His name was Richard Gold, and he died of AIDS-related complications back in the late 1980s. Richard was a good-looking, slightly portly...

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The Manly Pursuit of Desire: John Horne Burns' The Gallery

(2) Comments | Posted September 17, 2013 | 3:16 PM

I have just read one of the best books I've ever experienced in my life: John Horne Burns' The Gallery. A lot has been written recently about Burns: The New York Times had a big piece about him, and the recent biography that came out about him, Dreadful: The Short...

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The Manly Pursuit of Desire: Harry Reems and I

(2) Comments | Posted March 28, 2013 | 3:12 PM

I recently read that Harry Reems, a New York actor now basically remembered as the star of Deep Throat, certainly a seminal piece of art from 1972, died on March 19 at the age of 65. Reems was born Herbert Streicher in Brooklyn on Aug. 27, 1947 (about month before...

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The Manly Pursuit of Desire: Confessions of a Gay Boy Scout

(3) Comments | Posted January 31, 2013 | 5:20 PM

Recently The New York Times reported that the Boy Scouts of America leadership was considering lifting the national ban on gay scouts and scout leaders and leaving it to local scout troops to decide the issue for themselves. I think this is a wise choice for several reasons....

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The Manly Pursuit of Desire: Two Weeks With the Flu

(0) Comments | Posted January 24, 2013 | 10:01 PM

I guess I've led a charmed life. Until this month I had never been even a bit sick at any point in the 21st century. I'd had some very minor sinus problems and some quick jaunts with food poisoning, but nothing even vaguely serious. As far as the flu was...

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Perry Brass: The Manly Pursuit of Desire: Jean Valjean at Christmas

(0) Comments | Posted December 17, 2012 | 10:17 AM

Last week, TCM had a Les Miserables marathon, screening 3 different film versions of Les Miserables, one right after the other. Host Robert Osborne told us that this Victor Hugo novel has been filmed 11 times, which must be a record for any work of fiction--I don't even know what...

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