New York

Clifford Prince King, Jug of Change, 2019, ink-jet print, 36 × 24".

Clifford Prince King, Jug of Change, 2019, ink-jet print, 36 × 24".

Clifford Prince King

LAUNCH F18

Clifford Prince King is a photographer who documents black gay male desire. Given that artists such as James Baldwin, Langston Hughes, and Marlon Riggs are among his canonical forebears, his approach might seem a daunting gambit for any young artist to pursue. But as the six works featured in his online exhibition at Launch F18 attested, King very much has his own voice, which both harmonizes with and distinguishes itself from this esteemed lineage.

In Jug of Change, 2019, a nude man sits in a swivel chair, his foot extended onto beige, wall-to-wall carpeting. The upper half of his head is wrapped in a black do-rag, and his hand covers his face. Is he ashamed of his nakedness? Perhaps he’s unhappy, or trying to conceal his identity, or simply deep in thought? His flaccid cock and balls are at the center of the photo and immediately draw the eye’s attention; one might hastily conclude the

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