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Gay Men Draw Vaginas (2010)

The picture book of vaginas drawn by random gay guys. It includes realistic, conceptual and un-categorizable drawings credited by men from around the world, collected over the span of three years.

Editors: Shannon O'Malley & Keith Wilson
Publisher: Breezy Circle
284 pp.
8.75 x 10.25 x 2"

More info can be found at

Introduction to the 2013 Hardcover Version

In 2011, while eating dinner with friends at a restaurant, the topic of “vaginas” came up, as it does. Neither of us remember what sparked this request, but Shannon asked Keith to draw “a vagina” on the table, which was covered with paper and decorated with a centerpiece of flowers and crayons.

After Keith drew his vag, everyone at our table came over to gawk and laugh at it. His creation sparked a totally fun vaginal conversation. To keep the excitement going, Shannon asked Keith’s boyfriend, who was also at the table, to draw one. When he did, everyone, again, bitchily scrutinized it and then compared it to Keith’s. For the first time ever, we were looking at two vaginas drawn by gay men.

After the fun of drawing vaginas for dinner, we acknowledged that our little art session had surfaced  some interesting reactions and questions. But how could we answer these questions with only two vagina drawings -- a scientifically invalid sample size?

The only way to set forth on our path of inquiry was to get more vag drawings. So we set up art-making booths in places where gays congregate -- gay parks, gay sidewalks, etc -- and got them to draw vaginas. For three years we operated a roving vagina collection laboratory furnished with a table, crayons, pencils, markers, and blank paper. Next to our table we hoisted up a giant pink sign that read “DRAW VAGINAS HERE.” It was a barely scientific study. Part anthropology. Part relational art. Part performance art. Part party.

All different sorts of people came and asked if they could draw vaginas for us. No matter who they were, we told them that if they identified as a “gay man,” we wanted their vaggies.

These art booths harvested hundreds of drawings. As did our call to friends and networks to let people know we were collecting vaginas. And it worked: people sent us vaginas through the Internet. They handed us vaginas at parties. They even mailed us vaginas. The artwork and people’s responses to it continue to fascinate us.

Part of what’s kept us interested has been the diversity of vaginas and everyone’s reactions to them. What we’re presenting here is a collection of representations that move from misogynistic to celebratory, from anatomical to metaphorical. We do recognize that the terms “gay man” and “vagina” are highly charged. They’re related to how we define and conceive of ourselves, and that’s serious territory. They’re also charged at the more macro, societal scale -- big heads bandy these terms around and tether them to different and often times conflicting agendas. Politicians, cultural critics, journalists, educators, medical professionals. But we aren’t interested in presenting any one particular message; we’ve gathered “data” and now we’re presenting it.

The project has taken various forms -- a Tumblr, a party event, a public to-do, a studio wall plastered with hundreds of vaginas -- and we’ve had lots of conversations about what we’re doing, what the artists think, what the vaginas might “mean,” etc. We’ve gone lots of places with it, and we hope that the drawings in this book will take you on a similar journey.

Shannon O’Malley + Keith Wilson

Some Select Vagina Drawings

Vagina Collection Booth Images