Sick, Blue Sea
The film follows a fictional narrative spoken by a teenage sperm whale blogging about her chronic nausea. The film follows a fictional narrative based on real life stories of sperm whale standings. The author Philip Hoare has theorised that some standings are caused by whales swallowing plastic, which eventually causes peritonitis as it starts to clog up their digestive system.
Rose has an autoimmune disease that causes a similar form of obstruction, one of the symptoms of which is continuing nausea. She has been thinking about how to use her experience of long-term illness in her work, and she has been exploring how online identity technologies have transformed the experience of illness. In this work Rose is using her own experience of blogging as a diary of illness to create empathy or compassion for another being.
Lizzy Rose is an artist based in Margate in Kent. She has the autoimmune condition Crohns disease and intestinal failure. Lizzy was an Associate at Open School East in 2018 and has been part of the Crate programming team since 2016. Previously she was Assistant Curator at LIMBO working with artists Matthew de Pulford and Paul Hazelton.
Over the past year she has been exploring how to use her experience of illness to make work. The video work Sick, blue sea, shown in the final show Gut Feelings in December 2018, was the culmination of several ideas Rose explored throughout her year as an Associate at Open School East. The work follows a fictional narrative spoken by a teenage sperm whale blogging about her chronic nausea. The work links several of Lizzy’s key interests: chronic illness communities online and the culture surrounding them, narrative storytelling, and humour.
In 2019, Rose spent the majority of the year in hospital but continued working from her hospital bed and in 2020 she followed government advice to shield. Her work has become her Instagram feed over this time. She has been using it to document her life as a person in the “high risk” category. Rose is currently waiting for an experimental Small Bowel Transplant which has been delayed due to the pandemic.