Celebrating Pride for All with Torraine Futurum [Pride Diary]
This year’s NYC Pride Parade is expected to surpass last years’ two million participants. In the wake of the the tragic Orlando massacre, the iconic Stonewall Inn was recently inducted as the first national LGBTQ landmark ever, and it seems as though New Yorkers and city transplants are prouder than ever. To celebrate, Milk enlisted three artists to capture their Pride festivities. Here, meet Torraine Futurum, an alien from another planet. The self-proclaimed “Black Panther Barbie” has been documenting her transition since 2014, in a project called Transgression: A Self-Centered Art Project, and she was recently featured in Carly Rae Jepsen’s “Boy Problems” video. We’re ready for her to take on the universe.
“I was actually quite reluctant to participate in Pride. The celebration is way too often white-washed and cis-washed,” said artist Torraine Futurum. “Way too often, people call it ‘Gay Pride’ which made me feel unwelcome. Luckily this year I had a large crew of historically underrepresented queer and trans people with me who came ready to disrupt the order. We made Pride our own and looked damn good doing it.”
We have to agree—from the looks of her Pride photo diary, Torraine and her friends did look damn good. The artist/alien started things off at the Trans Day of Action March, advocating along with friends like Hari Nef, Michael Bailey Gates, Leah James, India Salvor Menuez, Garrison Partusch, Ang Rand, Rowan Oliver, Meetka Otto, and Maya Monés. According to Futurum, “It was such an empowering and inspiring event. [You felt] the camaraderie of trans folks monopolizing the streets of downtown Manhattan, and cisgender people just had to deal.”
From there, it was on to Williamsburg’s Brick Theater for the final performance of British Honduras Fantasy, a show starring Futurum, which ran as a part of the Trans Theater Festival. Then on Sunday, it was time for Grindr and Visionaire’s Slumbr party, in which the dating app took over The Standard Hotel for a massively epic affair. In the comfort of Nef’s suite, Futurum met up with friends, including model John Tuite and stylist Ian Bradley, and rocked a most excellent pajama lewk. She had a dope weekend, but as we dorks may say: don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.
For more of our Pride photo diary series, check out Sussi Suss’ and Carlos Santolalla’s.
Images shot exclusively for Milk by Torraine.