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02/03/2009

Art intimidates life: 'Daily News' unearths load of Mullarkey

by Jeremy Hooper

Art critic Garrit Henry, writing for Art In America, once said this about artist Maureen Mullarkey's work documenting the NYC gay pride parade:

This delving into sexual politics seems a highly fashionable art-world strategy. You'd think the artist couldn't go wrong. Attitudinally, she hasn't, with her "ain't we got fun?" outlook, tempered, it must be said, by a certain eloquent conveyance of sympathy for societal deviance. One wants to like, or at least be able to commend, her well-intentioned opus. But maybe it isn't so well-intentioned in its ennobling of its subjects at their most ungainly and self-mocking. In the end the paintings struck me as abortive. Mullarkey's men and women seem frozen forever in their gay misery. In the grip of the lowest forms of campiness, her long-faced revelers seem mighty dolorous. And who can blame them?
Maureen Mullarkey at First Street - painting and drawing - New York, New York - Review Of Exhibitions Art In America (Jan. 1994)

But now today's NY Daily News tells us that "dolorous" gay misery may be exactly what Ms. Mullarkey is aiming for. Read:

LOS ANGELES - A New York artist known for her colorful canvases of drag queens and gay pride parades gave $1,000 to help pass California's ban on same-sex marriage.

Maureen Mullarkey, 66, made her sizable contribution to the National Organization for Marriage's "Yes on 8" fund in June, a Daily News review of campaign records found.
...
Questioned outside her home in tony Chappaqua - the same town where Bill and Hillary Clinton live - she refused to discuss her donation last night.

When asked how she could have donated money to fight gay marriage after making money from her depictions of gays, she just said, "So?"

"If you write that story, I'll sue you," she said.
Artist draws gays' ire for same-sex nups ban support [NY Daily News]

200902030853Sue them? For printing what's on the public record? What a load of Mullarkey. Kind of like dedicating a large portion of your career to documenting gay lives, and then a portion of your money to hurting the same.

We would, however, like to invite Ms. Mullarkey to find us at this year's parade. We'll be the ones sticking our fingers up in her face. But not our middle fingers, mind you. No, no -- It will be our ring fingers that we are waving in front of Ms. Mullarkey's eyeballs, showing that no money, big or small, is ever going to stop our fully legal commitments from going on, and that no artist, regardless of talent, is going to paint us as lesser-than beings non-deserving of parity!

*MORE: Here's Mullarkey's own description of her gay-centric paintings: Guise & Dolls [MaureenMullarkey.com]

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Your thoughts

She sounds like some sexually repressed fundie lesbian in denial. Her wrinkly old c**t just needs some non-religious attention. ;p

Posted by: | Feb 3, 2009 9:15:54 AM

Time for Mullarkey owners (only gay ones, of course)to sell her shitty work to the christian right to recoup her donation for our side! Bitch!

Posted by: tomtom | Feb 3, 2009 9:32:26 AM

Garrit Henry needs to put down the thesaurus.
Maureen Mullarkey has been demoted to the mailroom.

Posted by: Jon | Feb 3, 2009 11:02:17 AM

Oh Yeah! I want a pic of those spectacular RING fingers!! Please...Yep I'll beg.

Posted by: LOrion | Feb 3, 2009 1:03:54 PM

WTArf.
This hurts as an artist, a lesbian, AND a former fan of her works. For shame. For shaaaaame.

Posted by: Clicky the Fox | Feb 3, 2009 2:23:18 PM

I find her work to be more condescending than celebratory.

Posted by: Timothy | Feb 3, 2009 4:45:57 PM

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