The Residence Gallery presents Angel Rose in her premier solo show Sick Bag; a cross-contextual exhibition spanning the realms of contemporary art and DIY counter culture. The recent evolution of independent artist publications (zines) proves the physical medium to be far from obsolete in the digital age. Zines have gained greater weight in the public consciousness as a radical creative practice.
Embracing DIY communities and their ethics, the exhibition offers visitors a chance to witness how work produced in zine-making adapts to the physical space of the gallery. The show brings new perspectives to the practice of zine making, while also allowing the work to be accessed outside of the zine fairs, club nights or specialist bookshops where publications like Sick Bag are usually found.
Stepping away from her background in video and live art, Angel Rose has used a combination of photography, illustration and text to create this body of work. The Sick Bag zine is an unbound artist’s zine, packaged inside a customized brown paper bag. Inside are 9 double-sided post-cards featuring images of “sick chicks.”
In keeping with the artist’s signature sensibilities, the work in Sick Bag fluctuates between the serious and the ironic. The use of the word “sick” serves a double meaning. As a slang term, it is used to describe something that is attractive and cool. It can also mean something that is morally and visually reprehensible. Inspired by the artist’s upbringing in the Los Angeles punk scene, the protagonist of Angel Rose’s Sick Bag is cartoon caricature of the female deviant. Images of this character are complimented by text-only pieces such as “excesstential crisis” and “happiness is coming”, which showcase the tongue-in-cheek sloganeering typical of Angel Rose’s work.
The majority of the prints included in the exhibition are poster-sized, and many have been deliberately mistreated - ripped torn and crumpled - to achieve an effect that mimics the ephemera produced by punk subcultures as well as the material language of street art. Framing and exhibiting these works within the tradition of a gallery space calls into question our understanding of “authentic“ and inauthentic artefact, in a way that denies both those terms to read as mutually exclusive.