If you’re standing in the Sistine Chapel craning your neck up toward one of the most magnificent artistic achievements of all time and you hear a gaggle of grown men giggling, chances are pretty good you’ve stumbled upon a gay-themed tour tittering it’s way through the Vatican Museum’s massive art collection.
A tour company perhaps aptly named Quiiky is just giddy about the naked men in oil and stone but also all the “gay” artists they insist painted or sculpted them from antiquity through the Renaissance.
Gays see gay everywhere. An affectionate letter from a Greek General to a trusted aide and the General is forever after listed in the gay pantheon. In an age where beds were few and far between, Abe Lincoln shared one with a friend while traveling and so Abraham Lincoln is claimed by the gays. Some of them claim Stonewall Jackson.
In the art world the sculpting or painting of naked bodies is prima facie evidence of same-sex desire. The Vatican Museum, one of the most vast and important museums in the world, is therefore prime hunting ground for gays looking to giggle over taut muscles and much else.
They even go after Jesus Christ. On Quiiky’s website they describe Christ in the Sistine Chapel as a cross between a “twink,” which is a submissive effeminate boy, and a “bear,” a rougher and dominant older man.
The Quiiky tour guide Tiberio Tassinari talks in the smutty language common to school boys everywhere. “Now we go to see the sexy naked guy”, which is a warrior wiping sweat from his body with his johnson, what’s left of it anyway, in full view. The warrior’s backside is not in view, which Tissinari regrets because “his b-side is one of the best ever.”
Tassinari’s approach will remind some of Saturday Night Live’s Dan Ackroyd in E. Buzz Miller’s Art Classics where a sleazy Miller points out all the naked breasts and bottoms of classic paintings for the pleasure of his public access cable audience and his porn star sidekick Christy Christina. He holds up the reclining nude Venus of Urbino “painted in 1538 by a guy in Venice, and this is for real, his name is spelled T-I-T-I-A-N, Tit-ian, honest to God.” He calls it “a really nice painting of a broad on a couch.” Christy giggles.
Tissanari and his largely LGBT following are much taken with an image in the Sistine Chapel of two men embracing with one kissing the other’s cheek as they enter into Heaven. They are sure the men are gay and the image reflects not the cultural conventions of the day but Michelangelo’s conflict between his homosexuality and his devout Catholicism.
The proof of Michelangelo’s homosexuality is sparse and is based on sonnets he wrote to a young friend and who expressed his love in return. The kind of florid expression used by Michelangelo was common between and among men in those days and only becomes “gay” in the hands of 21st Century sexual ideologues.
Much of the evidence of coded homosexuality in the Vatican Museum is similarly flimsy, giggly but flimsy.
Follow Austin Ruse on Twitter @austinruse