Although few gay actors have been permitted the luxury of openness, many of them have challenged and helped reconfigure notions of masculinity and, to a lesser extent, of homosexuality.
Considering the unique set of problems facing lesbians who want to produce erotic art for the enjoyment of other lesbians, it is remarkable that so much lesbian erotica has been produced in so brief a time.
Lesbian actresses have played a significant role in Hollywood, but their contributions have rarely been recognized or spoken of openly; the "lavender marriage" is by no means a relic of the past.
Although American gay film icon Brad Davis has been described as "the first heterosexual actor to die of AIDS," he was widely known as bisexual within the entertainment community.
Long-distance swimmer and respected sports commentator has in more recent years spoken out on issues of glbtq rights.
The greatest dancer of his time, Rudolf Nureyev also gave the world a new and glamorous image of a sexually active gay man.
While nude depictions of women appear in most cultures, on both sides of the equator, and in rich variety, lesbian artists have been particularly resourceful in their use of the female nude.
Handsome, athletic, graceful, and charismatic, actor Errol Flynn was widely rumored to enjoy sexual relations with men as well as women.
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Congratulations to Michael M. Kaiser, president of the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and John Roberts, a government economist, who were married on August 31, 2013 in a ceremony officiated by Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
As Robert Barnes reported in the Washington Post, "The gala wedding of Kaiser and economist John Roberts at the performing arts center brings together the nation's highest court and the capital's high society and [marks] a new milepost in the recognition of same-sex unions."
Kaiser and Roberts were married in the Kennedy Center atrium Saturday night before 220 guests. Attending were stars of opera (Renee Fleming, Harolyn Blackwell) and Broadway (Ron Raines, Barbara Cook), as well as some of Washington's most influential philanthropic and arts patrons, such as Richard and Betsy DeVos, Catherine and Wayne Reynolds, and Jacqueline Mars.
Justice Ginsburg and Kaiser are close friends. She is known as the Supreme Court's most ardent supporter of the fine arts, especially opera.
Kaiser, 59, has been at the helm of the Kennedy Center since 2001 and is an internationally recognized expert in arts management and one of Washington's most influential civic leaders. He is scheduled to step down as head of the Kennedy Center in December 2014. He will remain the president of the Kennedy Center's DeVos Institute of Arts Management, which he founded to train arts managers across the United States, through 2017.
"I can't imagine someone I'd rather be married by" than Ginsburg, Kaiser said in an interview in advance of the wedding.
"It's wonderful to have a friend and a great person preside at your wedding," he said, adding: "My wedding is not about making history. It's about marrying the person I love."
Roberts, 32, works at the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. He is not related to Chief Justice John Roberts.
During a recent interview, Justice Ginsburg expressed excitement about being the first member of the Supreme Court to conduct a same-sex marriage ceremony.
She said, "I think it will be one more statement that people who love each other and want to live together should be able to enjoy the blessings and the strife in the marriage relationship."
Later in September, she is scheduled to officiate at another same-sex wedding, that of Washington food writer David Hagedorn to Michael Widomski, director of communications and executive affairs for the National Weather Service.