A Wearable and Fine Art Gallery
Bombshell Betty's is a fine and wearable an art gallery in San Francisco's SOMA district with a focus on supporting and showcasing work from variety and burlesque-related artists, performers, and students as well as artists whose work is inspired by burlesque, pinup, strip tease, variety performance, vaudeville and the circus arts. We showcase work that relates (even if only tenuously) to the burlesque/performance community or feminitity/feminism in general in all "traditional" mediums as well as costuming, clothing, jewelry, sculpture, and photography.
Are you a variety or burlesque performer who also produces visual or wearable art? Do you produce visual or wearable art inspired by burlesque, striptease, pinup, or variety performance? Contact us to submit your work for future exhibits!
It's time for another art show at Bombshell Betty's! This month we are featuring three photographers of very different styles and backgrounds but all three focusing on a burlesque/erotic/feminist message. Whatever art already graces your walls, there will be something here for you to appreciate and (dare I say it?) buy.
The last gallery exhibit was a great success for Bombshell Betty's and both artists involved. We had over 100 people come through during the evening and sold several works (not to mention going through a couple cases of free wine).
We are honored to have artists in this show that have been working for decades and also proud to be giving one artist her debut showing.
FREE ADMISSION & WINE! (w/ ID)
Friday, Sept. 28th
8P-10P : Art Show
10P-12A : After Party
715 Jordan St 102
@ 5th Street in San Francisco
(look for the red door)
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I was born March of 1955, in Manhattan, NY of Polish/ Jewish/Survivors. My parents followed the borscht belt to Miami where my Father became an itinerant photographer, at first working with a man with a pony, then going from one beach-side hotel to another. Sometimes he would go to the local pier for a large shark or fish to drape across his hood so people could have their picture taken with it - "Stand here, hand on hip, head back, say cheese..." - coming back the next day with the "proofs" in one of those one-eye-peepers, hoping to sell a couple of enlargements. Anything to make a buck (which is what he charged for a peeper). It was a hell of a way to make a living, and it still amazes me that I have this love for photography that I do, unlike my father.
The people I most like to work with not only see their selves as the star in some elaborate movie but are hearing the sound track as well. My ideal is to take that self-image (however bizarre or unusual ) and become cameraman, producer and director, working with the them to produce a plausible image that satisfies us both, trying not to destroy any of that fantasy.
I now live in the San Francisco Bay area and am working on a number of projects as well as doing commissions.
"Really good erotic photographers are multiplying on the net now and we try to feature one per issue. Here is our latest find, with his classic portraits of strikingly beautiful women; a terrifically exotic tarot deck, black and white pix of tattoos and piercing and soft fetish. Also commissions; anything he says, but weddings and Bar Mitzvahs. Fair enough!" -Desire Magazine
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Gladys White (AKA "The Naked Artisan"):
I'm a Bay Area girl through and through. I grew up in San Mateo and now live in San Jose, California, spending the majority of my days working as an office manager for a start-up. I have been passionately exploring the world with photography since 2004. I call myself a photography major, although I have only been able to find the time to take two photography classes to date. My work is the product of basic skills mixed with wild dreams and experimentation. I love composing
images that tell stories. I do my best to capture the heart of an image, especially when photographing people. I find myself drawn to creative portraiture, boudoir, and light fetish photography at this time.
I am inspired by all visual artists. I am constantly bookmarking talented photographers and artists I come across in the vast Internet sea. I hope to continue my formal education in photography, but am content, for now, to continue exploring different ways of telling visual stories on my own. I dream of the day when I will be able to have a dedicated space where I can tell my photographic stories full time. I hope you enjoy the stories I have to tell today.
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Michael J. Berkowitz:
As an artist, I have long been interested in the universal power and necessity of religious ritual and its theatrical qualities.
Five years ago, inspired by a book of 19th century erotic photographs, I began taking nude portraits. At first, it was merely a whim, a diversion between exhibitions of my more serious work. My desire was to simply create a beautiful image. I bought an old-fashioned large format camera, created a set in my studio, paid a model, and took some pictures. The results were so beautiful, I had such a wonderful time doing it, and the response to the photographs was so strong, I felt as if I was really on to something. I put aside my other work and dedicated myself to the photography.
Once again, this time in my own studio, I set the stage, provided the costumes, and allowed my subjects to play a role. Inhabiting this fantastic version of themselves, they became transformed into something else, embodying an image of transcendent beauty and sexuality. By losing themselves in a role, they revealed themselves. They were able to expose themselves in the most intimate of ways while hiding behind the role they were playing. One after another expressed how strongly they wanted to show themselves to the world and how exciting, liberating and empowering the experience was.
The longer I worked in this medium, the more I wanted my imprint on everything. I began to design and make elaborate costumes and jewelry specifically for each of my subjects. Draped in my robes and encrusted in fabulous jewels and crowns, they become some kind of fantastic royal figures.
My models come from all walks of life -- artists, dancers, burlesque performers, as well as psychologists, archaeologists, marketing executives, students, housewives, even physicists, ranging in age from 18 to 60. Although I shoot mostly women, I have also photographed men, couples and the transgendered. The one trait they share is a burning need to display their sexual and personal selves to others, and to be able to see themselves, both as they truly are and, at the same time,
as the most ideal vision of themselves.
The Inaugeral Exhibit
Bombshell Betty's Gallery would like to thank everyone who came out for our inaugeral art show in July. The grand opening show featured works by Burlesqueteers Jennifer Lyman (Sweet Cheeks) and Amy Woloszyn and had an attendance of between 90-100 people. More than just talented burlesque performers, Lyman and Woloszyn showed what they could do with oils, acrylics, fishnets, beads, rhinestones, silver dishes, dental x-rays, feathers, miscellaneous packaging, crystals, semi precious stones, and even a pot holder.
Check out the !
Artist: AMY WOLOSZYN:
Amy loves to paint. She is by day a graphic designer, and by night a fine artist – hoping someday that the night takes over. Painting has always been part of Amy's life and she likes to try new materials, printing methods, and mediums.
She graduated from Pratt Institute with a bachelor's degree in Graphic Design. Throughout her studies, she maintained a balance of fine arts and illustration classes in addition to her focus on typography and design. After six years of study, work and fun in New York she moved to San Francisco to start her own freelance graphic design practice.
Amy fills her time away from the computer on the dancefloor, crafting, and riding her bicycle. She discovered Bombshell Betty's Burlesquercise class a year ago, and has enjoyed several sessions, onstage performances and assisting at shows. She finds it to be a wonderful outlet for personal expression, humor, and creativity.
Artist: JENNIFER LYMAN:
Jennifer Lyman has been performing under the name, “Sweet Cheeks, the Cutest Burlesque Performer in the Universe” since graduating from the San Francisco Art Institute in 2003 where she studied painting and other art mediums. She performs with Bottoms Up! Burlesque, Twist My Balloons, Sparkle City Burlesque, and Bombshell Betty’s Debutaunts (Burlesquetters) in the San Francisco Bay Area. Jennifer also enjoys hand-making jewelry and has been featured in fairs and boutiques throughout San Francisco and the East Bay.
Are you a variety or burlesque performer who also produces visual or wearable art? Do you produce visual or wearable art inspired by burlesque, striptease, pinup, or variety performance? Contact us!
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