presented by gallerywest

Constructing one’s self is more than a random process; it’s a strategy. Jacques Ellul noted that “modern man deeply craves friendship, confidence, close personal relationships. But, he is plunged into a world of competition, hostility and anonymity.” It is this hostility and anonymity that breeds action, whether it’s met with passive reluctance or through a course of creative achievements.

To shred this sketch of anonymity one must be aware of the transitions in theory and practice, what we are cognizant of as well as the ambiguity of our inner dialogues. Perhaps it is in this hidden verbiage that our true selves becomes exposed; now, choosing to accept this distinction is another notion entirely.

This desire to define is fostered through culture, environment, education—but it is also through moments of fretful angst that our pegged identities surface.

In gallerywest’s latest exhibit, “You might just make it after all…/ I am a Closet New Yorker”, the lens turns inward, assessing the intricacies of our own customized culture. One will notice that this exhibition is both literal and metaphoric in that there are clear incidences of identity creation bridged with numerous false conversations and schemes.

“These works explore ‘versions’ of myself that I have imagined through a vicarious lens, heavily influenced by pop culture and the imagined lives of sophisticated individuals, “ explains Evan Tyler.

As a special addition, acclaimed poet and playwright Sheri-D Wilson will present her poem, “I am A Closet New Yorker”, to be read aloud at the opening reception.

Together, Tyler and Wilson highlight their fascination and attachment to big city conformity with specific references to New York City. In a series of fleeting images sound recordings and fictitious compositions, viewers play homage to a seeding manifestation of generated meanings. Reactions to shows like the “Mary Tyler Moore Show” and films like “Ghostbusters 2” are expressed through a multi-media experience, furthering a poignant disposition of urban assertions. Tyler demonstrates his ‘urban uniform’ through plausible roles such as emulating the successful New York businessman.

Archival pigments and audio create a sensory attachment and it is through this process that onlookers will become connected to Evan Tyler’s glamourized character. More so, dramatic statements and anecdotal banter further plaster a personified template of contemporary conceptualization.

The exhibit is to be assessed in a humourous and critical manner while also exposing Tyler’s rural background ideals and his ongoing counterculture of discovery.

“You might just make it after all…/ I am a Closet New Yorker” runs from March 1st to 31st, with the opening reception on Thursday, March 3rd from 7PM to 10PM (EST).
To learn more please go to
To take part in the Allan Street Reading Series go here
gallerywest is located at 1332 Queen Street West in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Quote Source: Propaganda: The Formation of Men’s Attitudes, Jacques Ellul, 1965.