#FollowFriday, Aug. 3: You Should Be Following These 5 Artists, Athletes and Activists
Every week, we bring you five of the best LGBTQ+ Instagram accounts from around the world, with each one a gem well worth a scroll or ten. This week, be inspired to work out, shout out and sing out.
This rising star is one of Africa’s most promising and gloriously bold LGBTQ talents, with a stunning voice and passionate new music for your ears.
He faced death threats for playing a man in a same sex-relationship in the movie, The Wound, which explores the secret world of a Xhosa male initiation ceremony.
In a post earlier this year he said:
“We are vile and we are perverse… I saw myself as a child, mocked for being effeminate. Afraid for my life as a teenager when I walked past straight men because I had no idea what they were capable of. I always had something to hide. They hated me. They hated us, unless we made them laugh. Unless we did their hair and proved that they were good people.
“I grew up, I was still afraid, but I refused to hide who I am. There was and there is nothing wrong with me… So you’ll take us off your cinemas, you’ll rip our paintings/photographs off walls. But we will not go anywhere. We will still be here even if you think you’ve won.”
His vocals are smooth and beautifully vulnerable, with Interloper, one of our favorites. It’s haunting, funky and fresh with a sparkly video to go with it.
Carson Tueller is a student who broke his neck at a trampoline park on December 30, 2013. The resulting spinal cord injury left him paralyzed from the chest down.
With a motto of “defy the odds,” this handsome hunk has gone through a rigorous process of physical therapy and recovery, with his gym videos serving as an inspiration for disabled and able-bodied people around the world.
He’s back in college serving as the President of the international LGBTQ organisation Affirmation, which supports our gay brothers and sisters in the Mormon community.
“Last fall I decided that I would share my story more vulnerably, you know, really let people see Carson. People responded with their own genuine stories and really connected to mine. It was unexpected and beautiful.
“Instagram has also been a safe space for me to reclaim my body post-injury, and sharing that journey (sometimes in the form of what some have called a thirst trap) has been met with healthy validation, something I’m very grateful for.”
Bisi Alimi calls himself an “angelic troublemaker.” He’s a well-known Nigerian LGBT activist who lives in London with his husband and partner.
Alimi became famous when he came out openly on national television in Nigeria 14 years ago, in a country where it’s still dangerous to be openly gay. The show’s live format was subsequently cancelled. He lost his job, was almost killed and was forced to flee to the UK.
He’s now one of Africa’s most passionate and charismatic gay activists, heading the Bisi Alimi Foundation, which has a mission to accelerate social acceptance of LGBT people in Nigeria.
“My Instagram is a goldmine as much as it is a war zone. I use my page to challenge homophobia in my home country as well as racism in my adopted country.”
To all my trans, gender non conforming, dyke, lesbo, gay, homo, bi, queer family, I fucking love you. All of you. Your whole self. You are more than what this world wants to commodify of you. You are so beautiful all the brands want to get with you. You are so creative that all the capitalists want to steal from you. You are so exquisite internally that everyone wants to try to rep you externally. . But you are so much more than what they could ever try and sell. Or buy. Or take. . May we know we never need sell out. May we stay weird and unruly. May we never give up on each other. May we never forget those that lived and lost so that we could have and be here. May we never lose sight of our responsibility to care for every other being, especially those that struggle, those that are deemed illegal. Those that are at the whim of the same evil that has, and still works, tirelessly to destroy all the many communities we come from, as well as the one we share. May we remember that we are needed. In celebration and in struggle. In liberation and in re-creation. Your queerness, and mine, is so necessary in this world of boxes and borders. May we break everyone of them with the immensity of our love and the power of our commitment to be collectively free. . #pride #GoddessBlessTheQueerness #LoveYou #AbolishICE #AbolishBorders
The award-winning astrologer behind lines like, “you had the same Mercury Retrograde as Beyoncé,” creates ungendered horoscopes for “intersectional mystics.”
Her Instagram is full of cosmic guidance, humor and poignant, original approaches to the stars. She’ll give you a dose of positivity and power whenever she comes up in your scroll.
A vocal advocate for all marginalized voices, this is what she said on a recent post, about Pride:
“To all my trans, gender non conforming, dyke, lesbo, gay, homo, bi, queer family, I fucking love you. All of you. Your whole self. You are more than what this world wants to commodify of you. You are so beautiful all the brands want to get with you.”
She certainly doesn’t hold back, and that’s one of the reasons why we love her.
. ?B E L T A N E B L E S S I N G S? . To celebrate May Day, Beltane, and the fact that we survived the full moon in Scorpio, I wrote you horoscopes covering the first 2 weeks of May. Today marks the 1/2 way point between the equinox and the solstice. A cross quarter day that celebrates the abundant fertility and virility of nature, Beltane wants us to enjoy the pleasures available to us. Dance, sing, jump over a bonfire offering. ? Seducing the Goddess is an act of worshiping the natural world around us. Including us. . Here’s a little from your horoscope intro, link to scopes in bio: The waves that the Scorpio full moon on April 29th beckoned keep crashing upon our shores throughout the first week of May. . Tides turn when they are good and ready to. . With no major aspects until May 6th we are free to feel the more subtle stirrings of our psyche. Much within was turned over and tuned into with the swell and release of Luna’s light, so go easy with your heart, its workings, and its yearnings.
This queer teenage Palestinian multi-disciplinary artist designs gorgeous controversial sportswear that challenges stereotypes of what it means to be a Middle Eastern man. We love his label @trashyclothing but also his fabulous photography, video and drawings.
We are tremendously excited to see how this massively talented, self-defined “weirdo” develops. We love weirdos. Weird is awesome.
Speaking to i-D magazine earlier this year, he said:
“In terms of societal expectations within my community, it’s hard to express myself freely in public because I live in a conservative place. This is where the internet comes in as a safe place for me to express myself with no censorship.”