“BUTT started in 2001 as a pocket size magazine for and about faggots.”
This is both a historical fact and a mission statement for the — oh hell, let’s just say it — cheeky magazine that’s chronicled the glorious union of art and porn in this new millennium. With pics of hot bearded dudes alongside pieces from our favourite culturemakers on its proud pink pages, BUTT looked like nothing else on the newsstands, even as it proudly carried forward, as Bruce LaBruce said, “the spirit of this old gay consciousness.”
Shortly after shocking the world (or, at least, one clueless Vancouver housewife) in 2009, BUTT ceased its print operation and became an online-only publication. Never again will someone pick up a bright pink magazine called BUTT and be shocked by the homosexual imagery within, despite the lovely good will of hipster clothing stores.
But, wait! BUTT magazine’s joyous approach to sexuality lives again in the meaty form of a hardcover book with the most appropriate title: FOREVER BUTT. In his introduction to this greatest-hits edition of the magazine, artist Wolfgang Tillmans calls it “an exhilarating read.” Like its namesake, BUTT is hard to resist, and anyone who’s anyone has been inside of it.
Alongside classic interviews — with queer iconoclasts like AA Bronson, Aiden Shaw, Dennis Cooper, Ed Droste, François Sagat, Gore Vidal, Jayne County, Joe Gage, John Waters, Rosa von Praunheim and dozens more — are the furry photos that have made the magazine so beloved.
Creators and editors Jop van Bennekom and Gert Jonkers went on to create fashion magazines Fantastic Man and The Gentlewoman, but I don’t predict a similar hardback volume in those magazines’ futures. BUTT packed a lot into those little pink pages and I’m hoping this is merely the first of several volumes for the little magazine that made a grown woman cry.