Queens in Drag

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    First Edition.

    21cm x 13cm. 7, [57] pages, black and white illustrations. Illustrated saddle-stapled wrappers.

    Female Impersonators on Parade. Photobook showing the finest of drag attendees to the Bal Fantastique, herein called the Arts Students League of New York Ball. Starting in the 1920s as an annual fundraiser for struggling art students presented by the Artists’ Equity Association in which all manner of extravagant costumery was on display. This digest-sized photo essay captures much of the drag finery from the late 1950s / early 1960s balls. With a 7 page text introduction harking the Ball’s beginnings back to the turn about balls of the French monarchs Louis XIV and XV, and a short description of the New York Ball in the 1960s highlighting the queens: “A golden opportunity for female impersonators, transvestites, rugged he-men who delight in wearing satin and lace, and others of the artistic set who wait all yearlong for this one chance ‘to let loose'”. Published by S-K Books, quite likely the notorious sexploitation publisher Leonard Burtman who in 1964 after the collapse of Selbee reemerged as S-K Publishers, and using an unsigned cover illustration he likely squeezed from Eric Stanton in the early 1960s. The event was relaunched in 2023 as The Art Students League of New York’s Dream Ball. 3 copies in OCLC. $2.00 price stamp to front cover, the NYPL copy stamped $4.00.

    Very minor rubbing to wrappers. Very minor foxing to first and last pages. Near Fine Condition.


    SKU: 0034306 Category: