Tyler Lafreniere

Comfort and Support

March 25 – April 26, 2015

Press Release

Launch F18 is pleased to announce, Comfort and Support, a new installation by Tyler Lafreniere. This is his third time showing with the gallery and the first exhibition in the Project Space at 95 Orchard Street.

Tyler Lafreniere’s work probes contemporary masculine identity by reinterpreting iconic cultural imagery. By examining male form and masculinity, he makes apparent the raw social discourse that surrounds men in the 21st century. Lafreniere attempts to access the special relationships and bonds that have existed between men throughout history, and comprehend what that means in the contemporary world.

For this exhibition, Lafreniere has recreated a men's locker room in the project space. The locker room operates as a key location in the development of masculine identity, from childhood visits with a father to the pubescent experiences in high school. An exclusively male space, the locker room serves as a supposedly safe, private area for dressing and showering in conjunction with athletics. Beyond this rudimentary function it is the quintessential location for male fraternization -- a site of competition, bravado and masculine showmanship. The nature of these circumstances raises sexual tensions, both overtly heterosexual and homoerotic, exemplified by the genre of locker room pornography. By placing the locker room behind a glass facade on a city street, Lafreniere creates a voyeuristic relationship, opening the tensions inherent to the locker room space to public observation.

Tyler Lafreniere is a visual artist based in Brooklyn, NY. In 2006, Lafreniere earned his BA in Fine Art from Hampshire College in Amherst, MA. During his undergraduate studies, he also concentrated in Printmaking at Goldsmiths University in London. He has shown in various venues New York and around the United States and has been showing with Launch F18 since 2012.