O Brother, Who Art Thou?

Self Portrait with my Hair Parted like Frederick Douglass, 2003. Lambda print. 142.2 x 111.8 cm

Hip hop spiritualist, funky afronaut, Zen master of performance yoga, shelving shaman: Rashid Johnson is all those things, and his infinitely layered work confounds easy understanding just as it proves devastatingly attractive.

Interview by Francesca Gavin

 Standing in front of Rashid Johnson work can be an awe-inspiring experience. At times it feels as if his objects embody the entire history of art, ritual and worship – true contemporary reinventions of the fetish. These altar pieces, which he often refers to as shelves, manage to fuse the cultural dissection of Sherrie Levine, the textured materiality of Joseph Beuys, the mysterious iconography of African art history and the political accessibility of Public Enemy all at the same time.

Born in 1977 in Chicago and based in New York, Johnson first garnered attention in 2001, a year after he graduated, with a show curated by Thelma Golden at The Studio Museum in Harlem. His work seemed to pioneer a generation Golden described as “post-black”. Blackness is something central in his work – whether that ranges from black textured paint to the blackened stains of branded wood to cleaning black bathroom tiles. Yes, there are also fascinating references to black culture – from bowls of shea butter to Al Green record covers to exhibition titles referencing the boxing promoter Don King. Yet there is so much more going on in his films, photography and sculptural work than just Afro-Americana. Ideas around materiality, performance, history, music, philosophy, belief, autobiography, masculinity and the language of art itself. What is so exciting about Johnson’s work is how it manages to convey all that in an incredibly accessible way – using references and imagery that engage people far beyond the confines of the critical art world.

In person Johnson is laid-back and refreshing, and he works from a studio in an old converted garage in Bushwick, in the wilder ends of Brooklyn. Sun Ra and Coltrane records pile up in boxes amongst branded pieces of wood that make the space feel like a blacksmith’s workshop. Here his assistants create the blank slates and domestic structures that the artist transforms by hand. Johnson is very engaged with his work and the result is a body of work that feels heavyweight and broad at the same time.

It should be no surprise that over the past 12 months, Johnson’s work has attracted serious attention. A well-represented corner of the Arsenale at last year’s Venice Biennale was followed by a nomination for the Guggenheim’s 2012 Hugo Boss Prize (following in the footsteps of people like Christoph Buchel and Anri Sala). It’s also Johnson’s year of big solo shows – an impressive exhibition at Hauser & Wirth in New York in January, a one-man show of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago in April (later touring to Miami and Atlanta) and an upcoming takeover of South London Gallery coinciding with Frieze. 

Contemporary art’s own radical afronaut, Rashid Johnson is riding the medium to somewhere it’s never been before. Here, he opens up to Sleek on his relationship with materials, optimism and those shelves. 

Sleek: You originally began studying photography. How has that influenced what you’re creating now? 
Rashid Johnson: I think the glue to all is in a strange way an interest in how light hits the surface. A lot of my earlier photographs are Nineteenth Century process photographs. I think this interest in process and material is the thing that holds it all together. That sense of the wonder that comes from learning how to apply a different material to a surface.

Sleek: How does history inform what you do? 
RJ: In a lot of ways, I thought about applying history as a tool and as a material and really showing little fear of manipulating it. I’m not positive there’s ever a really distinct stance taken because I don’t think the work really functions as [something] didactic. It’s more aware of a historical language that I close in and out of – taking historical figures, recontextualising them and placing them in a conversation with me, which is probably enormously ego-driven. It’s part of this game – to produce a one-to-one relationship between myself and historical figures.

Sleek: You’ve referenced specific figures in the record cover, books and materials in your works. What draws you to those individuals?
RJ: My mother being a historian and looking and digging through her library and considering the things she found to be significant. When your mother’s a historian you realise at a young age the value that your caretaker – the person most important in your life as a young person – places on things. These histories, and in my case American history as well as African history, politics, philosophy et cetera, was the value tool in my home. Honestly, it’s not so much something I just came to on my own as much as something that was the way I was raised.


A September Party for the September Issue

Photo © Trevor Good

On the evening of September 12 the Sleek team and its extended network celebrated the launch of the new issue, themed Kiss & Tell, at a party in Soho House. The event brought together the people who make Sleek with many of those who read it, including key artists, gallerists, photographers, stylists, models, writers and clients, while the party also had a second purpose: to celebrate the launch of the newly-inaugurated Berlin Art Week 2012. The atmosphere was bohemian, relaxed and convivial, and extended long into the night – and it was perhaps no surprise that among the last of the guests to leave was the iconic artist-cum-rock star, Martin Eder. Watch this Space for further Sleek events future.

Sleek thanks sponsors the Aquila Group, Land Rover, MAC Cosmetics, Wolford, Ruinart, Belvedere Vodka, Terrazas de los Andes, Häagen Dazs, Vöslauer, Diesel and Veltins, DJ Daniel Rajkovic and the staff of Soho House Berlin.

 Photographs by Nadia Morganistik and Trevor Good


Pringle of Scotland remain true to form

True to form Pringle of Scotland remained Pringle of Scotland – staying close to its heritage of the 1800s but this time inspiration from the brand’s 1950’s ‘Sweater girls’ allowed for the collection’s colour palette to push the boat out. In came the mints, porcelain pinks, indigos and jades, shades which successfully jazzed up the prim and proper ensembles – a mix of high-scooped necks and buttoned-up thick pointed collars. In true Goldilocks fashion the tailoring of pants and dresses was just right.  Neither too tight nor too loose, perfect for the label’s audience aka the highflying career woman with not a hair out of place.

As expected Pringle’s staples were also readily available. Knits and sweaters, sometimes featuring the signature argyle, made up a healthy part of the collection – no doubt something for the brand’s loyal followers. That said, efforts were also made to do something different; the moiré paneling on tapered three-quarter pants was an interesting touch as well as the meticulous assortment of bright coloured acrylic beading which added an element of fun and frolic. We were in particular favour of the latter, a feature allowing us to reminisce those childhood days of looking into a kaleidoscope to witness a magical land. Suffice to say it’s something we’d definitely have in our wardrobe next summer.

Preen come home

After ten seasons in New York, it’s Thea Bregazzi’s imminent arrival of her child that brought the Preen duo back to their British roots. “Welcome back Preen” was what Thorton and Bregazzi’s Spring/Summer 2013 collection said to their audience, an audience which greeted them with open arms.

Set against the backdrop of The National History Museum’s futuristic Darwin Centre and pumping electro music, the show got under way. First out was a series of navy ensembles – a mix of tailoring and floaty feminine looks including high-waisted wide-legged pants accompanied by oversized boyfriend blazer, transparent summer dresses together with details including Bretton stripes and silver foiled French lace (a particular favourite).

The show’s most interesting statement was a patchwork clash which worked. Animal skins including python prints made their way onto silk, organza and leather mixed with stripes, coloured paneling and classic white. Not a middle-aged leopard print was in sight; instead the collection used its palette of navy and Peony pinks to modernise its patchwork.  Although the leather ensembles were too rigid, giving the models’ march an overly robotic feel, the other looks attested to Preen’s core aesthetic– to make an all-inclusive wearable collection. Preen, welcome home. 

Acne pushes boundaries at LFW


Once again, Acne Studios Spring/Summer 2013 runway show was about pushing boundaries. A series of looks unique on their own while remaining connected to the collection’s core – MUSIC, COLLAGE and NEW were the ominous reminders strewn across models marching down the runway. Words reminding us of those uncertain high-school years, years where experimentation of the unknown, irrespective of its outcome, were tried and tested.

As the show got underway, innocent childhood tunes intermingled with the clash of heavy synth beats, a signal for the melting pot to follow. Wearable, perhaps not, though statement it was, the likes of over-size belt buckles, masculine knee-high gladiator sandals and doubled up cowboy hats were recurring details tying together the variety before us.

In terms of colour palette, nothing was forgotten. The same went for cuts and fabrics. Soft neutrals mixed with bold hansa yellow, jade and violet not forgetting strong injections of jet black. Floor-length floaty skirts contrasted with tapered tight-fitting trousers, peplum sleeves and structured leather ensembles. Crushed linen, nylons, washed silks and cottons were few of many fabrics to make an appearance.

Towards the end, as models made their exit to the sound of a revamped Abba’s Dancing Queen, the audience was left digesting all they had seen. So many looks, so many details, it’s hard to pick the season’s favourites. For now, we’ll let the buyers decide.



FreshFaced + WildEyed

Helen Goodin, C, 2011 C-type unique print, 50.8 x 61cm. ©Helen Goodin Courtesy The Photographers’ Gallery, London

If you are like us, and get a kick out of being ahead of that curve, then we suggest you head down to the Photographers Gallery, London, for their “FreshFaced + WildEyed 2012” exhibition. 

Comprised out of twenty two photographers, all of whom have graduated from photographic BA or MA courses throughout the UK in the past year, “FreshFaced + Wildeyed 2012” dedicates itself to showcasing new photographic talent emerging from the the UK as well as offering professional guidance to each of the finalists in the twelve months following the exhibition. 

Already in its fifth year, this year’s show hosts work of artists from all paths of photography, ranging from the examination of the production in war photography, the investigation of light via the means of the dark room process, how an image relates to sculpture and painting, and using the camera as way to map the past. 

The exhibition will be on display in the major spaces on the fourth and fifth floor of the Photographers Gallery, London, until the 30th September 2012.


Sara Ziff speaks about Model Alliance

Sara Ziff

Beauty is assumingly linked to privilege but the actual facts of modeling present an entirely different story. The girls wearing exorbitantly priced garments in opulent editorials and on high-end catwalks often work as the equivalent of unpaid interns or indentured servants, beholden to their agency. They are subject to abuse and harmful demands. Since many models are underage, they are especially vulnerable to having their long-term wellbeing undermined by an industry fixated with fleeting glamour.

Fashion’s sparkle and whorl can often distract models from gaining their own footing in life. Along with their own glamorous illusions, the fear of being replaced and the hope of being rewarded with rare super-star status keep most models quiet, which is why models need unity and an organization affiliation to change standards and norms. They also need a role model. Thankfully, Sara Ziff’s top-model status in campaigns for Tommy Hilfiger, Stella McCartney, and Kenneth Cole, coupled with her intellectual upbringing at Manhattan’s Bronx High School of Science, Dalton School and Columbia University, make her the ideal campaigner for Model’s rights.

After investigating the unglamorous struggles of models at all career stages for her documentary “Picture Me,” Ziff founded the nonprofit Model Alliance as models’ equivalent of the Actors’ Equity and the Screen Actors Guild (SAG).  Ziff and fellow supermodel Coco Rocha are Model Alliance’s leading activists, and they’ve assembled a stellar base of serious support from top-billing models including, but hardly limited to Shalom Harlow, Trish Goff, Milla Jovovich, Carre Otis as well as support from Fordham University’s Fashion Law Institute.

After a Model Alliance gathering where supermodel Coco Rocha spoke, Ziff offered us her insights.

Ana Finel Honigman: When I spoke with the models after Coco’s talk, all of them articulated only romantic, abstract and largely unrealistic images of modelling (i.e.: “to be creative,” “to be a role model,” “to be beautiful and meet interesting people.”) Were the models only presenting polished, but mostly dreamy, responses to me because I am a journalist or do you find that models’ own shyness and their poetic, rather than pragmatic, aspirations are significant hindrances in helping models help themselves?

Sara Ziff: Obviously modeling is a career that can be worthwhile beyond purely a financial incentive — for those who love fashion, it’s great; it’s a creative industry; unlike a 9-5 there’s flexible scheduling; many models enjoy performing and the highly social aspect of the work.

That being said, modeling is a job and earning a living certainly is a factor for most models. Many of these young women who you spoke with probably live paycheck to paycheck and some might even be working in debt to their agencies. It’s tough to expect a teenager to be businesses-savvy. But as Coco and I said, they should be treating this as a business.

Typically young women, and women in general, are much less likely to stand up for themselves and negotiate in the workplace. They are taught to be sweet and accommodating, to be grateful for what they have and not ask questions or demand more. If these girls truly want to be “role models,” they should set an example like Coco by empowering themselves in their work.

AFH: What is the average age, career stage and nationality of members in the Model Alliance, or attendees to the events?

SZ: Our membership skews older (mid-20s, early thirties). Often it’s not until the models have some experience of the business and hit a few bumps in the road — like, even lose their life savings to an unscrupulous agency — that they question the industry’s practices and appreciate the Model Alliance and our mission. Fortunately this season we do seem to be signing more members who are younger and in the beginnings of their careers. Some of the models at our most recent event were as young as 15. One 15-year-old model from Lithuania approached me after the talk and told me she was living here in New York by herself without her parents. She asked me if she should have a chaperone with her. Obviously she was having a tough time and her agency isn’t taking care of her. Plus the minimum age for runway work in New York is 16. This  girl shouldn’t even be here doing shows. She should be in school.

AFH: How have reality shows, like America’s Top Model, affected aspiring models’ ideas about the nature of the job, its degree of difficulty and their potential for success?

SZ: America’s Next Top Model is, I guess you could say, the Hollywood version of the industry. From what I’ve seen, it’s entertaining, but it has almost nothing to do with the realities of working in the business. If models want an inside look at the modeling industry they should check out my documentary “Picture Me” and Ashley Sabin and David Redmon’s documentary, “Girl Model”. These films explore real issues facing models, like agency debt and earning ability, extreme youth and the pressure to drop out of high school, and how it feels to be the object of physical scrutiny when your looks are your livelihood.

AFH: What has been the response among designers, editors, agencies and the power base to fashion towards the Model Alliance?

SZ: The response has been very positive. Diane von Furstenberg, Valerie Boster, the bookings editor at Vogue, top casting directors such as Jennifer Starr and James Scully, agency presidents including Chris Gay at Marilyn and David Bonnouvrier at DNA — they and many others have been supportive. There are some agencies have not made an effort to support our work and involve their models, but I hope they’ll come around.

AFH: How do assumptions about the inherent privilege of beauty impede models’ abilities to have their grievances taken seriously within and outside the industry?

SZ: My friend the sociologist Ashley Mears has said that taking models seriously is a way of taking women seriously. The fashion and beauty industries are overwhelmingly female and it’s no secret that what is traditionally considered women’s work has always gotten less respect. That’s certainly the case in modeling, when your work is your looks. But I think that’s changing across many fields. Look at domestic workers in the US: they’re essentially an invisible workforce of female immigrants who recently won basic rights and protections. (The New York Domestic Workers Bill of Rights was signed into law in August, 2010.) Models are also mostly female immigrants, but in contrast to domestic workers, they are young, highly visible and they work in a seemingly glamorous field. That’s perhaps the biggest challenge. I think models’ visibility and the perceived glamor or their work camouflages the fact that we are vulnerable because we actually have very few rights and protections under the law and work in what is essentially an unregulated business. If models start to take themselves seriously as professional business women who demand fair treatment at work, then I think we are more likely to have our grievances taken seriously by those outside the industry. 



Time travel with Slavs and Tatars

Slavs and Tatars, from the lecture-performance Reverse Joy

It’s A Trip: Several Propositions on Time Travel in the Work of Slavs and Tatars.

Advanced by Mara Goldwyn

“The future is certain, it is only the past that is unpredictable.”
Slavs and Tatars is a faction of polemics and intimacies devoted to an area east of the former Berlin Wall and west of the Great Wall of China, known as Eurasia. The collective’s work spans several media, disciplines, and a broad spectrum of cultural registers (high and low) focusing on an oft-forgotten sphere of influence between Slavs, Caucasians and Central Asians.

1. Far Flung

The collective Slavs and Tatars meets conceptually in Eurasia – a geographical and affective remit still exotic and faraway for their Twenty First century audience. Travel and trans-portation represent a strategy in their ouevre (and, unavoidably, a practicality). By imagining the shortest distance between two distant points – as much conceptually as topographically – they succeed in making the remote intimate. Evidences of movement, displacements and migrations dot their figurative landscape, and they are not shy about commemorating what are ignored or erased localities – often with a plaque, a tongue-in-cheek historical pamphlet, or a shrine.

In their work, the hyperbolic savouring of the stranger and the stranger’s region “as an agent of attraction and repulsion” recalls a certain type of Nineteenth Century orientalist travel writing, armchair anthropology and contemporary aesthetic inquiry all at once, bringing the viewer into a contemplative, humorous, and subtly-but-tantalizingly un-politically correct encounter with the other. Yet the idea is to engage, not to gape; Slavs and Tatars exhibits resemble less an ethnological diorama than a teahouse. Artgoers are often invited to come in, sit down, recline on a tapchan-carpeted platform, peruse books, and while away moments in a nook of space and time that is gently stretched, transcending the parameters of what is commonly referred to as the present.

That is, Slavs and Tatars emphasize not just where the experience takes place, but also how and when; in an early manifesto entitled “Slavs”, the collective proclaimed, “Slavs do not ‘spend’ time. In the Slavic thesaurus, under duration there is no dollar sign. Time is not money because there was always plenty of the former but never much of the latter […] Now, though money is bountiful for the select few in certain Slavic countries, time remains somewhat antipodean to late capitalism. We do not measure time with colleagues, friends or family in barter-like terms of dinner, a coffee, or a drink […Slavs will] simply be present and ‘pass’ the time with you.”

They continue: “The vagaries of time are celebrated, ritualized and collapsed. What happened four years ago is mentioned in the same breath, and what’s more, with the same urgency as an event that transpired 400 years ago. So it follows that housing prices, interest rates, inflation and the like are as much a fault of Ivan the Terrible as Putin.”

So although the collective’s concerns shuttle geographically between Russia, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Xinjiang, Ukraine, Lithuania, Iran, Turkmenistan and many other regions and breakaway republics big, small and fractured, the more adventurous journey here is through time. Indeed, few of the above countries have been so-named for very long (see, for example, Love Me Love Me Not, 2010). A short or long trip to the past – or to the future – would bring one to a place just as foreign, but completely different.

Slavs and Tatars, Pajak study, 2011

2. Time Travelling Towards The East

We imagine that Slavs and Tatars mount a DeLorean with a Polish pajak (straw chandelier, literally “spider”) hanging from the rearview somewhere over the flux capacitor, and drive toward the sunrise, like pilgrims to a shrine. At a certain velocity, the space-time continuum ruptures, yet they are still squarely Here and Now. Marty McFly hit the sweet spot at 88 miles an hour, but Slavs and Tatars achieve the feat of time travel within the present by moving excruciatingly, some might say erotically, slowly. Meanwhile the geographic coordinates of Here expand, contract, somersault over and roll themselves up like a Persian carpet, depending on who it is peering over the mountain. (See, for example, the 2009 installation and publication “Kidnapping Mountains” for meditations on the relativity of Here.)

The Eurasian peoples who are Slavs and Tatars’ subject of study and object of affection (including the eponymous figures, plus Kyrgyz, Ossetians, Uzbeks, Armenians, Abkhazians, Uighurs, Turkmen, Karachays, Mamluks, Azeris, Bulgars, Persians and Kipchaks) represent an implied conception of time and place which the collective mobilizes to understand the future: not its contents but its contexts. As the collective’s extensive graphic-literary output spanning flyers, posters, stitched banners, pamphlets, billboards, string-letter signs and floor stencils would attest, they are dear old friends of the aphorism. One such quip they sometimes use to crystallize their practice is the old Soviet joke, “The future is certain, it is only the past that is unpredictable.”

In an inverted fairy tale (which might be attributed to Slavs and Tatars themselves), Future, the ugly stepsister to the lovely but star-crossed Past, is actually the one fitting into the slipper that the handsome Present has left behind. In other words, as the Soviet past fades ever more into memory, what used-to-be grows ever more volatile and the new nations within the Slavs and Tatars area of interest mindlessly march toward the West, consumerism and a positivist “future”. Meanwhile, local cultures are increasingly in danger of being left by the wayside.

Now, Slavs and Tatars are no advocates of the rise of the rash nationalisms plaguing the regions in the Caucasus and beyond, but simply beckon toward attentiveness and awareness in the face of fading customs and the rise of the “modern”; they whisper, nudge, wryly joke, though never prod: perhaps the modern is not all it’s cracked up to be.

Camille Vivier, dream photographer

French photographer Camille Vivier’s impressive career as an artist and fashion photographer is the stuff of dreams. Only one year after graduating from Central Saint Martins, Vivier won the prestigious Hyères Fashion Festival in 1998, and went on to become a regular contributor to magazines like AnOther, Dazed & Confused, i-D and Numéro. Her work, firmly grounded on the crossroads of art and fashion, seduces with its intellectually stimulating imagery, conflating literature, cinema, art, and mythology.

Vivier’s work will be surveyed in an upcoming exhibition at 12Mail this month, and will include further series of her signature dream-like photographs.

Camille Vivier, Veronesi Rose.
September 14 to November 16
12MAIL/ Red Bull Space, 12 Rue du Mail, 75002 Paris. 

The many faces of collage

John Stezaker, Betrayal (Film Portrait Collage) XVIII, 2012. Collage. 27 x 21.5 cm. Courtesy of the artist and The Approach, London

Congratulations to British photographer, John Stezaker, who has been announced as the winner of the prestigious Deutsche Börse Photography Prize 2012.

After competing with three other shortlisted artists – Pieter Hugo, Rinko Kawauchi, and Christopher Williams – Stezaker was presented the award dotted with the £30,000 by influential photographer, Juergen Teller, who won the prize back in 2003. 

Controversially, Stezaker received the award without having actually taken a photograph himself. Nominated for his Whitechapel show in 2011, Stezaker combines found imagery from vintage postcards and film stills, magazines and other publications to create surreal collages with often humorous and sometimes sinister outcomes.

Speaking on behalf of the jury, non voting Chair of the Jury and Director of the Photographers Gallery, Brett Rogers, praised Stezaker for not only an outstanding contribution to the art and photography world, but for the significance of his work for younger artists: “compelling and disruptive, Stezaker’s work has been influential on a new generation of image-makers who have been inspired by his unswerving commitment to his practice.”

The Deutsche Börse Photography Prize including work by all shortlisted photographers will be on display until 9th September 2012 at the Photographers Gallery, London.

Everyone’s talking about Peckham

Photo © Stuart Griffiths

How did one of London’s most run-down suburbs become the epicentre for off-piste art? Sleek spent 48 hours there in search of “The Peckham Thing”

Text: Grashina Gabelmann
Photography: Stuart Griffiths 

Six pm in Bar Story, Peckham, London. South London. It’s the start of the daily half-price cocktail happy-hour. The place is buzzing with students and young graduates. Everyone seems to know each other and is engaged in at least two conversations at once. There is a tangible excitability in the air, which is due to more than just the prospect of cheap booze.

The bar is situated in a converted railway arch, and somewhere deep inside it sits its owner, Ben Sassoon, a 59-year-old, grey-haired, front-tooth missing, paint-covered T-shirt-wearing chap from Fulham, up the road in the smarter zones of London.

“Fifteen years ago I was cycling through Peckham and thought ‘Wow, what a strange and ethnic area,’” he recalls. “I saw a house for sale, won the auction and moved here. Then in 2003 I saw an empty area underneath Peckham Rye’s railway arches and thought it would make a great bar.” Rather like a runaway train, Bar Story has been an unstoppable success in an area which isn’t exactly known for its boho social life. On the whole, young Londoners don’t go to Peckham to socialize.

“The kids had nowhere to go,” Sassoon goes on. “They immediately latched onto the bar and made it their own.” Over the next few years, Bar Story became a nexus of ideas and projects, dialogue and conversation between students – and art students in particular.

But who are those “kids”? Look around the darkened bar, and you see waxed Barbour jackets, chelsea boots and nerd glasses; there are funky-fresh stars ’n’ stripes leggings and candy-coloured rara skirts. Many of them are here because of one of the nearby art colleges: Camberwell College of Arts, a few miles to the west, and Goldsmiths College, birthplace of the YBAs, not far to the east. Still others live in East London but opt to sip their after-school cocktails here.

Those who do live in Peckham, it seems, can barely contain their excitement for the place. “It reminds me of Astoria, Queens, where I grew up,” says Chris, a rep for music video directors. “I love it here.” Suren Seneviratne, an artist and Goldsmiths graduate, adds, “It’s down to earth, exciting and creative here. “It’s how I imagine East London was a decade ago.”

Since Bar Story’s success, Ben has turned a second arch behind the premises into the Sassoon Gallery. He says that he doesn’t see himself as an artsy person, and lets others do the curating. And curate it they do, because it just so happens that Bar Story is the social epicentre of what you could call British art’s own new epicentre. Peckham, you see, is trendy these days.

The evidence? Listen to Bar Story’s happy-hour conversations, check out the event listings on Facebook or consult the blogs, and the names scroll through: there’s LuckyPDF, an everexpanding network of artists working in performance and new-media art; and Samara Scott, creator of lustrous, surreal objects. There’s the Son Gallery, which is focused on lens-based media, and Food Face, a studio and gallery for experimental art.

You hear about new-media art collective Emotion Driven Process Based Parallel Identities; The Pigeon Wing, a Victorian warehouse turned gallery hosting international residencies; project space Arcadia Missa dedicated to post-internet art; and Rhythm Section, a music/arts collective who put on a lot of Peckham’s parties; creative collective Garadio Studiage, who, among other things, make Peckham-inspired artefacts such as sweatshirts and bags. The list goes on and on.

In recent years South London has been put on the art map – in fact the website SouthLondonArtMap.com is dedicated to doing just that. Last year the New York Times described Peckham as “a go-to cultural destination” while the Guardian sent a journalist on an alternative art tour with Holly Willats, the editor of contemporary art magazine Art Licks.

Bulldog for the boys


Bulldog is here! The range of natural, cruelty free cosmetic products for the modern, conscientious man is now available in Berlin. 

Bored of having no options for the modern man, the UK based cosmetic brand, Bulldog, set out to not only give the “switched-on man” cosmetics for their bathrooms, but also to reduce the number of man-made chemicals already lying in their dusty bathroom cupboards. Boasting body friendly products and steering clear of controversial chemicals such as synthetic fragrances, artifcial colours and sodium laureth sulfate, it has given the girls something to be jealous about.

To celebrate a mans right to moisturise, Bulldog have given Sleek one complete set of Bulldog products to give away to one of you lucky lot. This full product range includes, Original Moisturiser, Sensitive Moisturiser, Original Face Wash, Original After Shave Balm, and Sensitive Shave Cream. Email get@sleekmag.com for your chance to win!