At its core, independent publishing is a labor of love. It can also be a historical act, often an archive for the preservation and contextualization of counter and underground cultures. Teen Angels magazine was founded in 1980 as a dedicated and cult-followed art publication of California and Southwest lifestyles and aesthetics. For 35 years, Teen Angels magazine published over 200 issues, featuring artwork by incarcerated men and women, as well as original paintings, tattoo flash art, poems, and writing that focused on lowriding and car culture, Chicano culture, and gang life, obsessively cultivating a historic and contemporary narrative of life in the urban west. And all that was really known was that all this artwork was created by someone named Teen Angel, an icon without a face.

Although Teen Angel remained anonymous, Dave Holland was the artist and publisher behind the publication, and his passing in 2015 ended what was a rich living document. This summer in Los Angeles, that legacy will be reintroduced with the publication of a special 64-page issue of the magazine along with an exhibition at BEYOND THE STREETS with fellow LA icon, photographer Estevan Oriol. It's a poignant collaboration between Oriol and the late Teen Angel's closest friend and director of his estate, David De Baca, a conversation between legacies, identities sharing a piece of California culture that defines a dynamic period of time. 

Yes, it's about a magazine and a culture that might have been misunderstood by a wider audience, but Teen Angels represents an insightful and nurturing chronicle of community, a passionate vault for the documentation of culture. That the publication gave such a voice and outlet to young Chicanos and their art, now a respected genre in the contemporary art lexicon, is testament to the work of the man they called Teen Angel. 

Dedicated to You: Teen Angel x Estevan Oriol will open at BEYOND THE STREETS, Los Angeles, on June 29, 2024.