Philatelists’ Delight? The Gay Bondage Stamps of Finland

Courtesy Itella Posti Oy; original image: Tom of Finland Foundation

Courtesy Itella Posti Oy; original image: Tom of Finland Foundation

You have to hand it to the Finns: they may have singlehandedly created a whole new generation of philatelists. Slate reports on the new gay bondage stamps designed by Tom of Finland:

The United States has some pretty cool stamps and, once the Harvey Milk stamp is released next month, at least one commemorating an openly LGBTQ American. But it’s difficult to imagine a future where America’s stamps are as amazingly, graphically gay as Finland’s. This fall, the country will begin selling stamps that feature the “confident and proud homoeroticism” of Tom of Finland, an artist renowned as “beyond question the most influential creator of gay pornographic illustration.”

Itella Posti Oy, the Finnish equivalent of U.S.P.S., boasts that Tom of Finland—also known as Touko Laaksonen—is “considered one of the most well-known Finnish artists around the world”:

His emphatically masculine homoerotic drawings have attained iconic status in their genre and had an influence on, for instance, pop culture and fashion. In his works, Tom of Finland utilized the self-irony and humor typical of subcultures. … The drawings on the stamp sheet represent strong and confident male figures typical of their designer.

The release of the stamps will coincide with an exhibition of Laaksonen’s work at Finland’s Postal Museum. To select which of Laaksonen’s more than 3,500 drawings would appear on the stamps, Posti consulted graphic artist Timo Berry as well as Susanna Luoto, the Finnish representative of the Tom of Finland Foundation, which is “dedicat[ed] to protecting, preserving and promoting erotic art.”…

[continues at Slate where you can view the other stamps]

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  • Echar Lailoken

    Silly uniformed man, that’s not a chair.

    • DeSwiss

      “You are a slow learner, Winston.”

      “How can I help it? How can I help but see what is in front of my eyes? Two and two are four.”

      “Sometimes, Winston. Sometimes they are five. Sometimes they are three. Sometimes they are all of them at once. You must try harder. It is not easy to become sane.”

      ~George Orwell, 1984

      I guess sometimes it’s a chair….. :-}

  • kowalityjesus

    Western society has come a long way. Why not make stamps about something that is not an abomination, like bugs?

    • Echar Lailoken

      Abomination, seriously KJ?

      • kowalityjesus

        o brave new world, which has such people in it

        • Echar Lailoken

          Someone could always make stamps depicting Catholicism, if they wanted an abomination.

          :D

          • kowalityjesus

            yeah I am sure. stop slurping that disinfo you last referenced on the matter, and get thee to Mass for a better notion of what Catholicism attempts to form man into.

          • Echar Lailoken

            I appreciate the sentiment KJ, but that won’t happen. It makes me happy that you didn’t get angry this time.

            Jesus kicked it with lepers and whores. I have a feeling the allegory allows for gay people too. A little food for thought.

          • InfvoCuernos

            Good luck finding lepers nowadays, but whores-more than enough for everyone to hang out with.

          • Echar Lailoken

            There’s still lepers out there.

          • Andrew

            I support all abominations as a matter of principle, and now, thanks to you, I will start supporting the Catholic Church.

          • Echar Lailoken

            It’s not my fault that you have that rule.

        • Echar Lailoken

          I don’t really mean it’s an abomination, BTW. Just teasing. That’s a seriously offensive word. I am however trying to make a point. It was bothering me.

          • kowalityjesus

            I know, God bless you. Beware what exits your mouth. I paraphrase Jesus, you can eat shrimp, pigs and locusts all day long, but in the end your own words will defile you.
            “Put that in your pipe and smoke it.” Matthew14:37
            haha I just made that up that chapter number, but it actually almost fits into the context.

          • Echar Lailoken

            Pan bless you. I offer the same in a quote from the late great Chuck Schuldiner. With musical accompaniment.

            Practice What you Preach

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0E8xdhuOQCI

            Spiritual Healing

            Always blocking the doors to your mind

            Escaping the reality that surrounds you

            Using faith as an excuse to kill

            A sick way of life is now revealed

            All the prayers in the world can’t help you now

            A killer a take of life is what you are

            Speak no more lies

            It’s your turn to die

            Preach the good word

            Speak no more, perpare to burn

            A justified torture?

            From this may others learn

            The life you took a holy death, a grave mistake

            No changing your mind, your life you should pay

            Practice what you preach

            Your loved one is now deceased

            Knowledge is at our hands

            Never to understand

            Spiritual healing

            [Solos: Shuldiner, Murphy]

            Blinded by the twisted ways you live

            Kill for religion, will the Lord forgive?

            Idiocy has stricken your mind

            A real-life hell you will find

        • Bruteloop

          Ideally, I would hope to not find you anywhere. Associating coprophilia with homosexuality says rather more about your bizarre thought processes or comically absurd ignorance than anything else. Add to that the fact that anal sex is not the exclusive preserve of homosexuals. I assume you believe sex is entirely for procreation. Let us all pray to your God you refrain from actually doing so and spreading your pompously high minded idiocy to your offspring. God ( your one ) forbid one of your kids turns out to be what you would term an abomination. Though that word seems to accurately describe the hatred you disguise clumsily as belief.

          • kowalityjesus

            These humans made the choice to defile the godly image in themselves
            by their perverse activities. What the hell is there to celebrate in
            someone defiling another person? It only furthers the gratification
            those people have in forcing their spectacle on the unwilling. That
            sucks.

    • DeSwiss

      Few ever consider the fact that they didn’t know anything until someone told them. Take the word: ”ABOMINATION” for example. No one knows what an abomination is until someone tells what it is. Right? (In this case it was Bronze Age, Semitic sheep/goat herders of the deserts of The Levant). And yet whomever it was who told us, it was also someone else who told them first — and so on and so on. So if whomever it was that started this was wrong in the beginning, then everybody since then is also wrong, or even wronger? Totally wrong in any event.

      I know, I know you’re probably thinking that G-d don’t make no mistakes. Well if that were true, then he sure killed and tortured a lot of people that he later forgave and told them is was all some big misunderstanding and that he’d never do it again, etc., etc. And then later he also sent an angel to impregnate a human (on his behalf) to correct all his other previous mistakes. So there’s that. This ”perfect” god is a work-in-progress.

      Oh and btw, you’ll be no doubt relieved to know that according to the Salon article: ”The stamps are self-adhesive and therefore require no licking.”I know you were probably worried someone could be pulled into the vortex of sin by just writing a letter to their Aunt Martha.

      Take care now. And remember: ”Judge not and all that jazz…..” :-|

      • kowalityjesus

        I think it’s pretty safe to consider eating shit and fucking a poop hole an abomination, if there is one. That and inflicting pain/suffering on another person for egoic gratification. God gave us the ability to do wondrous things with our minds and bodies. Think about how cool insects are, and how they are little mathematical formulae that evolved on God’s Earth. That is awesome. Let’s celebrate those. These humans made the choice to defile the godly image in themselves by their perverse activities. What the hell is there to celebrate in someone defiling another person? It only furthers the gratification those people have in forcing their spectacle on the unwilling. That sucks. I guess it’s just as well that I should let them become old in their sin so this kind of activity is no longer “sexy” but completely absurd. Perhaps they will repent. Time is on our side, eternity indeed.

        • Adam’s Shadow

          What’s the difference between fucking a hole where a man shits out of, and fucking a hole approximate to where a woman pisses out of? Sex is inherently a bacteria-ridden enterprise, as is most of life. And while I don’t condone or participate in coprophilia, I honestly don’t give a shit (pun intended) what two consensual adults do to satisfy their sexual urges, which is a complicated-enough area in itself. I call bullshit. Serious, serious bullshit.

          And celebrating insects? Have you SEEN the sex lives of most insects? It makes what these two muscular gents doing look like Mormons dry-humping. And I know some sleazy Mormons.

          • kowalityjesus

            God knows its an irony for me to denounce these things. I am simply of the idea that I liked growing up in an environment where homosexual activity is discouraged. This is called conservatism, wanting to keep things roughly the way they were when you grew up, it happens a lot to happy and successful people, because they would like to replicate the circumstances that led to their own position for their children.

          • Adam’s Shadow

            I was raised by two very straight, very observant Christian parents who were also very gay-friendly and who strongly encouraged me to question my personal thoughts and beliefs, as well as those of others (including that of my parents); they still insisted I attend church, however. Yet I am not a religious person; not because of the horrible things done to me in the name of religion, or because it was shoved down my throat, or because of any other negative reason (I actually have many positive memories of the church as brought up in and the people), but simply because I have far too many questions, and because I think of a truly unquestioning faith as the death of wonder.

            I have been in a monogamous heterosexual relationship for many years now and we have a young daughter together. Spirituality, faith, tolerance, and critical thought were not enemies the way I was raised, and they will not be enemies the way I raise my daughter. If anything, it’s as of they are all such good friends, that they think nothing of insulting the other because it’s all in good fun and they know the other can take it. Faith can be kind of a buzz-kill, but it’s the most responsible one and usually ends up being the designated driver.

            My experience of gay people is radically different from yours; gay people also do not have a monopoly on kink or sexual “perversion.” Some of the most degenerate people I’ve ever known have been straight married folks, and some of the most deeply loving and committed relationships I’ve ever seen have been gay ones.

            Peace and love be upon you.

          • Jonas Planck

            all my lolls! I just back-tracked to this comment thread from an article posted in response to the “abomination” thing he’s talking about… WHOO BOY! That was a burn if ever one was seen!
            “Think about how cool insects are, and the way they sometime reverse genders, engage in orgiastic gamete pooling, sometimes practice cannibalism as part of the sexual act, and their genitals are completely alien to anything we consider normal or sexy! That’s the kind of stuff God’s into!”

        • DeSwiss

          Aside from the fact that numerous G-d-created animals on this planet derive most if not all of their sustenance from some form of shit, it belies your lack of knowledge on the subject and about nature in-general. You also sound very immature. What makes you think you’re better than excrement? I’ll bet a lot of animal species think humans are worse than excrement, considering what we’ve put them through! Not to mention the extremes your G-d is apparently prepared to go to create life. If you don’t believe me, Google: ”Shit-eating animals”.

          Now, about those other things…. you know, your judging others…. you keep forgetting….. it’s none of your business! He told you to worry about your own ass. Remember?!?! ”Judge not, lest ye be judged?” And He said for you not to make a nuisance of yourself when people don’t want to hear what you have to say, and if they don’t, then you’re to shake the dust from your shoes once you leave the city. Have you tried that? No! Look it up! He’s saying to you believers: I’m the judge, NOT YOU!!! He also said that the way that you go around judging others is EXACTLY HOW HE’S GONNA METE OUT JUDGMENT TO YOU.

          Capice? I’d say if He reads this, you’re in a lot of trouble. Especially if you don’t start back-stepping right now!!!

          It’s not that I believe any of this, but I’m a PK — an OLD PK at that and I’ve seen and heard this shit all my life, so I ‘d know all this stuff even if I didn’t want to just from the exposure. So I know what it says!!!! So do us all a favor and learn how to read well and with understanding first, and then pick up your bible and read it thoroughly before you go around spewing your ignorance and hate upon the rest of us. Thank you, and may G-d bless! :-|

          • kowalityjesus

            I’m sorry, I don’t humor people that prefer to shit their double standards on me anymore. Your standards are your own to adhere to, mine are mine. I have not thrown any stones to kill anyone, as Jesus condemned, because I am a sinner. HOWEVER, I have defended my own right (and those like me) to not be exposed in public to smut like is depicted on these stamps. I think it reasonable to make public institutions like postage relatively uncontaminated from this kind of hedonism and fetish. I therefore think these stamps are a homage to ~eating shit, as salubrious and mentally healthy human beings should find abhorrent. Save me from your spectacle to respect my right to not indulge your fetish. I would rant and rave if this came to the US, and you can estimate my stance on approximate issues as well.

          • DeSwiss

            What a wanker. :-|

          • kowalityjesus

            ad hominem, the reserve of the rhetorically vanquished

  • Ted Heistman

    I think eroticism is intimately connected with creativity. In this case homoerotic but in general, if you want to get better at rendering human anatomy draw people fucking or whatever your kink is. It improves your skill by leaps and bounds. If you want to keep sucking draw still lifes.

  • Oginikwe

    I think I’ll just stick with the flowers and butterflies stamps.

  • http://voxmagi-necessarywords.blogspot.com/ VoxMagi

    O Tom of Finland…thank you for making the early years of homosexuality that much more horrific with your ludicrously hyper macho characters and depictions that increased my self loathing and general sense of not belonging, not only to the world of heterosexuality, but also to the gay world I then (foolishly) imagined was somehow in sync with your images. I wish I had known you were only a drop in the bucket of gay possibilities…or better still, not known that you existed at all.

    I’m glad the sad, pathetic era of closeted queens clutching muscle mags in between trips to rest stops is dying. It was the age of repression, self loathing and low self image perpetuated first by the hate of the heterosexual (most notably the frothing religious bigots…usually discretely panting after cock more desperately than even the wildest out homosexual or desperately covering for their own fear of gross inadequacy by frantically pointing fingers to draw the attention off themselves), then reinforced by the broken spirits and self hatred of gays who endured it, that made the culture that spawned ToF thrive. The death of that era cannot come fast enough…and finally the last grotesque dinosaurs of that era will become extinct…letting a world of gay people be free to define themselves in positive and public ways, as ordinary people, as parents or spouses, as citizens standing beside other citizens…the trivial difference between sexual orientations no more than a haunting memory.

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