The Artsy Hufflehoe: Zanele Muholi and the South African LGBTQI Community

The Artsy Hufflehoe is a feature on here (I’m not even going to bother and say monthly feature, because even though so far I haven’t missed a month yet when it comes to this feature, my other ‘monthly’ features aren’t that monthly) where I talk about all things art! This month I talk about my new favourite artist Zanele Muholi.

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Zanele Muholi’s exhibition is the most powerful exhibition at the Stedelijk Museum right now, and I’m so happy that it’s a really big exhibition too. There are several rooms dedicated to her work, and there is so many! Her work is incredibly moving, powerful and important, so to see the museum dedicate so much room to her work is wonderful.

But who is Zanele Muholi? Muholi is a South African photographer and visual activist. Her mision is ‘to rewrite a black and queer trans visual history of South-Africa for the world to know of our resistance and existence at the height of hate crimes in SA and beyond.’ Guys, I’m ashamed to say that I had no idea what was going on in South Africa. Of course I know that there are still a lot of countries where people from the LGBTQIA+ community are treated horribly, but I’ve never heard anything about South Africa specifically, whether it’s on the news or on the internet, which means I never really thought about it. Which is horrible. We need to talk about this and spread awareness. Which is exactly what Muholi wants to do with her work. 

Muholi only photographs black people from the community, and in the case of her most recent series ‘Somnyama Ngonyama’ (Hail the Black Lioness), she photographs herself, capturing the multiple roles that she assumes as a black lesbian. By using a high-contrast of black and white tonal values, she exaggerates her skin tone to emhasize her ‘blackness’. 

I absolutely love every piece of work I’ve seen of hers so far, but one of my favourites is definitely ‘Bester’. There are four portraits with ‘Bester’ in the title, which pay homage to her mother, Bester Muholi, who worked as a maid in a white household for 42 years. In the portraits Muholi uses everyday objects that refer to domestic chores, such as scourers and clothespins, as accessories and in hairstyles. By doing so, she creates personas that celebrate hardworking and underpaid women. 

I also adore her series Brave Beauties. The majority of those who are portrayed are participants of Miss Gay beauty pageants in South Africa. The photos don’t only celebrate the body and individuality, but also the women and men brave enough to publicly take part in queer beauty pageants, thereby helping to raise awearness for the LGBTQIA+ community, despite endangering themselves in the process. The photographs are beautiful and inspiring. They’re such a joy to see.

Apart from her photos (and there are many more!), the museum also shows two documentaries. One is made by Muholi herself, the other by Human Right Watch in which Muholi talks about the violence and discrimination the South African LGBTQIA+ community faces and how she strives to give this community a face.

Muholi has documentated weddings and funerals in the LGBTQIA+ community in South Africa. The other documentary shows the wedding of Ayanda and Nhlanhla, a transgender man. With these documentaries Muholi wants to highlight the contradictions that while same-sex marriage is legal, lots of people are still raped and murdered because of her sexuality. 

I don’t know if these documentaries are always part of her exhibitions, but if you have the chance to watch them I’d definitely recommend them, though do keep in mind that they can be triggering. 

While the entire exhibition is incredibly powerful and moving, the end is just… I have no words. At the end of the exhibition, there’s an archive on the wall in which Muholi documented hate crimes faced by the LGBTI community between 2006 and now. It takes up pretty much the entire wall (though it’s on there in both Dutch and English, so it looks a bit bigger, but it’s still way too big). It’s heartbreaking and chilling to read and if I had been alone I definitely would’ve cried. It’s horrifying, but so so so important to know what’s happening in other countries. Zanele Muholi is an inspiration for keeping track of all the horrible things that happen in her country and not letting it get her down, for giving her community a face and fighting for her and the rest of her community in South Africa’s rights.

I’d definitely recommend to read up on and take a look at her work and go to an exhibition if you have the chance.

Oof that was hard to write. I have so many feelings for this woman, her work and this exhibition, that I didn’t know how to put it into words (thus why I’ve put off writing it so long). There’s so much more I want to say, but I just don’t know how. Have you seen her work in person? Any other important artists like her that I should know about? Let me know in the comments!

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Why You Should Watch Disney Descendants

If you followed me back in 2015 or if you happened to stumble upon it, you may have seen my post on Disney Descendants. With the sequel FINALLY being out, my love/obsession has started again and I wanted to talk about why I love it so much and why YOU should give it a chance too.

If you’re not familiar with Descendants, it’s a movie franchise in which all the Disney Villains were sent to the Isle of the Lost, where they’re pretty much prisoners. Their kids never got a chance to prove that they’re different than their parents, and only did what they had to do to survive, thus resorting to villainous ways. The first movie follows Mal, Evie, Jay and Carlos, the children of Maleficent, The Evil Queen, Jafar and Cruella de Vill, who are invited to come to Auradon (where all the heroes live) for a ‘second’ chance (I mean they never got a first chance either since they’re being punished for their parents’ actions). This is all set up by Ben, the son of Belle and Adam. The four kids have to attend Auradon prep, where they meet many more kids of the good Disney characters.

So it’s basically fan fiction, except it’s from Disney and Dove Cameron, who plays Mal, said they told her it’s canon. So it’s like The Cursed Child except no one accepts that as canon

Why I love it and why you should give it a chance

Because I said so

💛 DIVERSE CAST! Out of the four original villain kids, only Mal is white. While Jay being the son of Jafar makes sense for him to not be white (or they’d be whitewashing), they didn’t have to cast Sofia Carson, who is Columbian-American, and Cameron Boyce, who’s half black. The Evil Queen is played by a Lebanese-American actress (though I’m a bit disappointed that she isn’t Columbian like Sofia, most movies would’ve gone with a white actress) and Cruella de Vill is black. In the sequel Uma, the daughter of Ursula, plays a big role (and it’s pretty obvious that she’ll return for the third movie), and is played by China Anne McClain who is black. Besides the main characters there is diversity among the supporting and background characters as well. Like Lonnie, the daughter of Mulan (who plays a bigger role in the sequel and just shines) and Audrey, the daughter of Aurora and Philip, is half-Mexican.

💛 FRIENDSHIP! Friendship between girls, friendship between boys, friendship between girls and boys – ALL THE FRIENDSHIP. Mal and Evie love each other so much, they have each others backs and would do anything for each other. They just want what’s best for each other and are never mean to each other. Sure, I ship them romantically (especially after that sequel y’all that was so gay) but I absolutely appreciate and love their friendship.

Jay and Carlos also have a positive relationship (okay I ship them romantically too but I have a lot of ships in this franchise okay), just having fun, supporting each other, having each other’s backs, believe in each other etc.
The four kids are best friends and would risk everything for each other. In the second movie Carlos calls it out that Mal and Evie always leave them and have their ‘girl talk’ and instead they all talk to each other and just mdfsdbg friendship
And the boys are also just supporting and caring towards the girls too they’re just one big happy family guys it’s beautiful

💛 BOYS SHOWING EMOTION. There are multiple moments where Jay and Carlos are not afraid to show that they’re upset and hurt. It breaks my heart but it also my makes me really happy because so many little boys watching Disney Channel can see that there’s nothing wrong with showing emotion

LOOK AT MY SON PROTECT HIM

💛 FEMINISM. There are lots of amazing female characters in these movies, who take the spotlight, kick ass, are smart and talented, support each other, lead pirate crews etc. One of my favourite moments is when Mal tells Evie that she doesn’t have to play dumb to get a guy and that’s she’s so smart. There are so many great rolemodels and important messages for young girls watching these movies and it makes me so happy

💛 THE SOUNDTRACK IS SO GOOD. Look, I loved the first movie’s soundtrack, but the sequel’s??? It’s so good?? Oh did I mention yet this is a musical franchise (directed by the one and only Kenny Ortega from High School Musical but it’s better than HSM please don’t hurt me) because it is and the songs are SO GOOD. AND THE CHOREOGRAPHY. JUST EVERYTHING. Also the sequel has it’s own Gotta Go My Own Way except it’s better because it’s between two girls (not to get your hopes up, they don’t end up together. Not in this one anyway. We can remain hopeful)

💛 IT’S FUN!  I mean it takes place in one of my favourite universes, aka the Disney one. There are so many of my favourite characters, their children, references and everything. Also it’s a musical. Musicals are fun

💛 THE CHARACTERS DUH. Characters can make or break something for me, and I love all my children so much. The villain kids have been through so much, being abused by their parents and being prisoners for something they didn’t even do. They’re all broken but they’re still so pure?? Like they can keep saying ‘we’re rotten to the core’ but they ain’t fooling anyone.
Then there’s Ben who’s just a pure cinnamon roll who needs to protected at all costs and just does his best™, Lonnie aka the love of my life who’s just as kickass as her mom and I love how her arc in the sequel paralleled her mom’s story, Uma who has taken all these poor broken kids on the Isle under her wing and turned them into one awesome pirate crew and just wants her freedom and Harry Hook who’s so Extra™ I have no words I love him

Look at my Extra™ son

p r o t e c t h i m

l o o k  a t  h e r

a n d  h e r

And so many others! Like Doug who never assumes anything about his relationship with Evie and just supports her? He’s just a pure boy? Also they could’ve easily made him whine about the friendzone in the first movie and how nice guys never get the girl but they didn’t. Oh and Gil who’s not even trying to pretend to be a villain??

And obviously I love the original four villain kids too, but I feel like I talk about them enough in the other points and I don’t want to repeat myself

💛 HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS. Okay Audrey’s relationships aren’t exactly healthy, but they’re never written to be perceived that way or romanticised. The relationships that you’re supposed to be rooting for though? They are. Are they all straight? Um yeah it’s Disney Channel, and while a main character on Disney’s The Lodge came out and Andi Mack is definitely going there too, it still has a long way to go. Descendants 2 has been long in the works though, and by the time these two shows went there it was already finished, so maybe these shows paved the way for more LGBTQ+ rep in the third one? Fingers crossed (I mean with Space Between I really feel like Kenny Ortega wanted to go there and Harry Hook ain’t straight y’all)
ANWAY. The relationships we do have, are healthy, supporting, caring, they communicate, they don’t tear each other down… They’re good. There are also interracial relationships.

Also the cast is so sweet, funny, supportive of both each other and the fans and love all their characters’ ships, INCLUDING the same-sex ones unlike a certain other cast *cough Supergirl cough* Basically I love these movies and this cast to pieces and I want to spread the love so I hope I convinced some of you

Did you watch Descendants 2 yet? What do you think of it? Better than the first one? Who are your favourite characters and ships? Are you also listening to the soundtrack non-stop? Let me know in the comments!

We Need To Talk About The Supergirl Cast At Comic Con

I don’t know how many of you heard about this, but last weekend at San Diego Comic Con the majority of the Supergirl cast hurt a lot of LGBTQ+ fans. Before all of this happened I actually already wanted to write about why I had stopped watching Supergirl, but boy do I want to get my feelings off my chest now. I wanted to write down my thoughts earlier, but honestly I needed some time to let it all sink in.

This is going to be a pretty long post, and I’m sorry about that. I usually try to not make my posts this long, but I need to get this off my chest. If you only want to know about what happened last weekend, feel free to just skip to that point!

Let’s start with why I stopped watching Supergirl

I haven’t watched Supergirl in a while now. I wasn’t really enjoying it anymore, since I didn’t recognise the show I fell in love with. It was supposed to be a feminist show, but it felt like it had become the Mon-El show instead of Supergirl. While in season 1 we had plenty of feminist messages, about how girls weren’t allowed to be angry for exmample, where we had actual role models for young girls to look up to and we had a lot of moments between the Danvers sisters, which is all gone during season 2.

They barely gave Karolsen, an interracial relationship a chance before they already broke them up when they barely even dated. James Olsen, an interesting, main and black character, was reduced to the background. Do I love the fact that they made him a superhero? Sure, but there have been episodes where he was completely absent. Also he was pretty much replaced by a white guy (who’s also a slave owner and mysoginist!!). J’onn, another black man, was barely present as well, even though he too is supposed to be a main character and had plenty of screentime in season one.

The best thing that came out of season 2 (I swear that pun was unintended lmao) was Alex’ coming out story. It was handled beautifully and Sanvers is a loving, healthy, but also pretty much non-existent relationship. Sure, it’s canon, but they barely get any screentime. On top of that, while I like Maggie as a character, she was supposed to be latina while her actress is not? I’m still really confused about this though, as there were also people saying that this wasn’t confirmed and that she may be latina after all?

And then there was Mon-El, my biggest reason for giving up on this show. I’m not one to give up on shows that easily, especially when I love the characters which I really did. I hated that some of my favourites were barely getting any screentime, but I was hopeful that the showrunners would listen to the fans and give James and J’onn their screentime back, just like I was hoping they’d actually make the show about Kara again and that Sanvers would be treated like the straight ships.

But the moment Mon-El and Kara got together, I just couldn’t watch it anymore. I couldn’t see if they would listen to the (legit!) criticism, because Mon-El and his relationship with Kara is very triggering for me. I don’t want to hurt anyone who likes Mon-El and ships Karamel, but Mon-El reminds me of an abusive man in my life, who’s the biggest reason I have PTSD and anxiety. So yeah, I definitely couldn’t continue to watch Supergirl anymore, because Mon-El was already giving me anxiety and panic attacks before they got together, but in the episode Mr. & Mrs. Mxyzptlk, in which they got together, things got a lot worse.

Honestly, while at first it really upset me that I had to give up on watching one of my favourite shows, I’m now so so so glad. I’ve been keeping up with what’s happening with the show on Tumblr, and it’s only getting worse. I don’t recognise Kara anymore. They’re continuing to romanticise abuse (again, I’m sorry if you like Mon-El and Karamel, but as someone who has watched her mother in a romantic abusive relationship for years and has been mentally abused for years myself, I just can’t help but see similarities). They’re continuing to shit on their characters who belong to minorities. Season 1 of Supergirl wasn’t perfect, no show is, but ever since it moved to the CW it has become sexist, racist and while Alex’ coming out was beautiful, giving Sanvers barely any screentime and only subtly implying that they’re having sex when Karamel had sex after only been together for one episode (an episode in which they fought the majority of the time), sending away the new black female character and thus also destroying a beautiful relationship between two black characters… And oh boy can I go on.

I haven’t seen the trailer for the third season that was released at Comic Con and I don’t want to. But I’ve heard (from interviews and people who have watched the trailer) that apparently Kara is done being Kara (‘being Kara Danvers was a mistake’) because (SPOILER FOR SEASON 2 FINALE) she lost Mon-El (he’s not dead, he just can’t return to Earth but it’s been heavily implied that he’ll return next season anyway) and in Melissa Benoist’s own words it feels like her world has been destroyed. Which actually happened to Kara at 13 when her planet was destroyed but yeah losing your boyfriend of a few months is just like that. Such feminism! Much progressive! Oh and they’re writing Maggie off and have no intention of bringing on another ‘gay ship’ and they’ll probably keep on pushing Mon-El in favour of their POCs

What happened at Comic Con

So I wanted to (sort of briefly because I have a lot more feelings and I pretty muched tried to ban this show from my mind so I think I forgot lots of stuff as well but that may be for the best because what I remember tires me out already and this post is already getting super long) talk about why I had already stopped watching Supergirl first, because I don’t want people to think that I only stopped supporting this show because of what happened at Comic Con. I am disgusted at people who were completely fine with the way POCs were being treated during season 2 and are only now yelling that the show is cancelled. I had already  given up on the show, but I hadn’t given up on the cast.

I mean, the reason I had given up on the show before was because of the writing, something the cast isn’t responsible for. The way they acted at Comic Con though? I want to make clear that I’m not talking about the entire cast here. Melissa Benoist, Chris Wood, Mehcad Brooks, Jeremy Jordan, Katie McGrath, David Harewood and Odette Annable (she’s a new cast member) were present at Comic Con, and the latter three are not the ones I’m upset with and disappointed in.

So if you don’t know, during an MTV interview the cast was asked to do a musical recap of the past season. Jeremy Jordan, who plays Winn, took the lead. He sings that Kara makes a new friend, Lena, and then starts yelling that ‘they’re only friends’ and that’s all they’ll ever be. Melissa Benoist joins in and honestly her ‘they’re/we’re (can’t make out which one she says) only friends!!!’ sounded like she  was offended that people would think her character was anything but straight. The way these two were yelling was disgusting and hurtful. Look, all of us Supercorp shippers know that it’s very unlikely that Kara and Lena would actually get together. We’ve been around for a while. You don’t have to yell at us that hysterically and laugh. It felt like they were mocking Supercorp shippers, who mostly consist of young LGBTQ+ women, who find happiness and hope in Supercorp.

I never cared much for Jeremy Jordan. But Melissa? She was someone I looked up too and did not expect this stab in the back from. Mehcad Brooks (James) is also someone I really liked and looked up to. But he got up and danced to the song and laughed along. Just like Chris Wood. Katie, David and Odette laughed as well, but looked very uncomfortable. Also, later on Katie stands up for the fans and says that anyone can interpret the relationship between Kara and Lena the way they want (it goes deeper than that but I don’t remember her exact words and don’t want to watch the video again – please don’t hate on Katie though). During which Chris Wood interrupts her and says something about how sexuality is actually how others perceive you. Look, he said he was being sarcastic, but it was still a really weird and shity thing to say? And why did he have to interrupt Katie like that? What did you add to her well-meaning, thoughtful words?

Chris also sang a song about what a cool place Daxam is and that if you want some fun you should come and hang out. Sure Chris, if I want go somewhere with slavery and sexism, I’ll go there! Gosh such a cool place.

Look, maybe you don’t find this hurtful. But a lot of LGBTQ+ fans, including me, felt really really hurt. And I don’t think that should be ignored. I’m not the only one who felt like the majority of the cast mocked us and stabbed us in the back. It’s especially troublesome since a lot of young sapphic girls watch Supergirl and look up to this cast. Yet here they are, making fun of them. It’s one thing to politely explain that Supercorp will never happen, but to sing it and yell hysterically?

To make things worse, Melissa Benoist has been quiet about it. Even though lots of fans have reached out. One fan wrote a polite, professional email to Melissa’s publicist, explaining that many (young) LGBTQ+ fans have been hurt and that this isn’t just about a ship (just to be clear, for me it’s not about the ship either). She got the most ridiculous email back, saying that this was defamation, that Melissa couldn’t be homophobic because she was on Glee and my favourite (yes the Glee argument is not my favourite): ‘There are gross injustices globally of the LGBT community. This was not one of those occasions.’ So a girl who’s PART of the community tells you that Melissa and other cast members hurt said community, and you decide that this isn’t a ‘gross injustice’? I won’t be linking to any of this, because the girl may get sued and I don’t want to bring too much attention to her and her blog.

Jeremy Jordan knew he had done something mean right away as he said ‘I think I’m going to get destroyed for what I just did. I just debunked Supercorp’ (to which Melissa replied that it was brave???? No it isn’t?? It’s a shitty thing to do?) so I’m honestly not buying his ‘I’m a good ally I have gay friends and I too am a victim here’ bullshit apology. He has apologised twice (because the first one really wasn’t well received) and I’ve seen him interact with some fans on his Twitter, but I have trouble taking his apology seriously. His comment after the song implied that he knew exactly what he was doing, and the way he was acting was just… I have no words. He also basically said in his first apology that we’re wrong and that what he did wasn’t homophobic. Listen dude, you as a straight guy don’t get to tell LGBTQ+ fans what is and isn’t homophobic. And just because there are also LGBTQ+ fans who are telling you that they didn’t think it wasn’t offensive and that they aren’t hurt by it, doesn’t make it okay. Because a lot of us were (and still are) hurt.

Here’s the video:

Jeremy’s apologies:

 

I want you to know how much I love you. Yes, you. Yes, you too. And you. That's all, kids. ❤️

A post shared by Jeremy Jordan (@jeremymjordan) on

U guys. I love u. I was wrong and I'm sorry. You're all amazing and valid. ❤️

A post shared by Jeremy Jordan (@jeremymjordan) on

Go to the comment section on this post for Mehcad’s reply:

Groucho the Gaucho. #sdcc #dcuniverse #supergirl #morelove

A post shared by Mehcad (@mehcadbrooks) on

UPDATE: David Harewood spoke out and tweeted the following:

I’m seriously disappointed with David because I thought he had looked uncomfortable during the song (others thought so too) but I guess I was wrong because he thinks our reaction is wildly over the top. I mean, people are hurt here, I’ve read stories about young sapphic girls crying but yeah our reaction is over the top, thanks David. Also what kind of bullshit excuse is ‘we were exhausted’.  What’s next you were hungry and needed a Snickers? ‘Personally I was very upset about this reaction’ – can you all please stop playing the victim here??? Also I hate that he says ‘the shippers’, implying that this is just about the ship. It isn’t. It’s about mocking LBGTQ+ fans and making them feel horrible. It isn’t just Supercorp shippers, it’s people who don’t ship it and even people who don’t watch the show who were disgusted and hurt as well
I’m really, really tired and hurt, so if you disagree, please please remain polite. I will not engage in any fights. How do you guys feel about all of this? Any shows (besides The Fosters and Shadowhunters) with LGBTQ+ rep that do treat their fans right? Also if you’re feeling horrible about all of this and need to talk, always feel free to DM me on Twitter <3 

All About My TV Shows Tag

I got tagged by the Queen of TV Shows Kat herself, so thank you Kat! If you’re not familiar with her blog, go check it out!

1. First TV show you ever watched

I definitely don’t know what the first one was, but one of the first was of course Pokémon haha. I know there were many other cartoons/anime I watched, but I don’t know which one was first? It might have been Pokémon, but there’s also a good chance it wasn’t. My first tv show might have been the Dutch Sesame Street as well haha. I really wish I remembered!

2. All-time favorite TV show

For a really, really long time this was definitely Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It is still one of my favourite shows, but it has been so long since I’ve seen it, I’m not sure if I’d still call it my number one? I definitely still love it a lot though. It shaped and inspired me in a lot of ways.

My all-time favourite tv show might actually be The Fosters though. I love it to pieces and it’s so so so important. I’ve talked about it before here and I’m considering writing a separate post on it because though it’s not completely unknown, it definitely deserves more love

3. Your character crush

Oh my gosh only one character? And are we talking current or past as well? Because I think as a kid I had a tiny crush on Ash Ketchum (I’m not sure if I approve of that hahaha).

Right now, it’s really hard to pick because I’m pretty much crushing on all the Shadowhunters characters (minus the obvious ones like Valentine and Sebastian – though Will Tudor is making it very, very hard – why is he so cute this is illegal)

4. Favorite OTP

I have so many OTPs that the ‘one’ part has kind of lost its meaning lmao. It’s really, really hard to choose though. It also depends on what I’m currently watching/reading. Like for a while Victuuri from Yuri on Ice were probably my favourite OTP, but since it stopped airing I lost my obsession (now it’s just a healthy love haha). Right now, I’d have to say Malec from Shadowhunters and Trimberly from Power Rangers (please don’t make me choose I already chose two out of the many, many ones I have)

5. Most disappointing ending or cancellation

Most disappointing cancellation is probably (I say probably since it’s not official yet) is BBC Class. It hasn’t been announced yet, but the ratings weren’t great since BBC barely marketed it and there has been no news regarding a second season yet. Even if it does get renewed though, I’ll have mixed feelings about it since it will be without Patrick Ness, the showrunner and writer of all the episodes. Another disappoiting cancellation was Powerless. I saw it coming, but I didn’t think they were just going to quit airing the remaining episodes. Rude. It was such a cute show, with fun references, a fun (and diverse!) cast, and it covered some important issues while still remaining a light show.

Most disappointing ending is definitely How I Met Your Mother and I will leave it at that or I will go into a rant and believe me no one wants that 🙈

6. A show you would like to be on

As in a cast member? Or a crew member? I’m way too shy to actually star on anything haha (also my anxiety is telling me nope no way start running now), but the Shadowhunters cast seems so lovely and fun that I’d love to work with them. Behind the scenes that is

7. A character you would love to take out on a date

Let me take out all my babies, buy them some ice cream and protect them from the scary thing that is the television industry (stop hurting them you monsters)

8. A popular TV show you can’t stand

Hahaha so many? Woops. Though I really, really can’t stand The Big Bang Theory #sorrynotsorry

9. A scene that made you cry like a baby

So many?? I’m super emotional so there are many scenes that made me cry. It’s also hard to choose one without spoiling anyone. Small spoiler for The Fosters (but a good one? And it’s not like you won’t see it coming?) but Stef and Lena’s wedding(s) made me cry like a baby.
There’s also a scene in the Andi Mack finale that I really, really don’t want to spoil. It’s a happy moment as well though, but oh my god I can still cry just thinking about it.

10. A character with a killer wardrobe

I love Petra Solano’s (Jane the Virgin) wardrobe. Not for me though, but still. Jane herself also has a great wardrobe. Bill Potts’ (Doctor Who) wardrobe was on point. Andi Mack (from Andi Mack) has a great wardrobe that I would’ve appreciated greatly at her age (I do on my age as well haha). Callie from The Fosters usually has great outfits too. Oh and how can I forget Queen Lydia Martin!! I also adored Kira’s wardrobe. Wait I was supposed to pick one?

I TAG

Ash | Smiling Dreamer | Nisha

What’s a popular tv show you can’t stand? Is there a tv character you’d eat some ice cream with? Let me know in the comments!

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Please Support Power Rangers I Need a Sequel

Hi I’m Michelle and I’m obsessed with Power Rangers

First off I want to start with a disclaimer: I’m not that familiar with any of the original Power Rangers series. I know I watched it as a kid but I barely remember it. So I can’t compare it with the original, so maybe that helped with my enjoyment, I have no idea. But to be honest I don’t think it should be compared to the original. This is a new movie for a new generation and it’s a super important one.

So you may be thinking: Michelle Power Rangers is no longer in theatre why are you asking me to support it? Isn’t it too late? No it is not!! Because the DVD is out so you can support it that way! Also I’ve read that the merchandise is selling really well and that’s really improving the chances for a sequel as well. So you can definitely still support it and help get a sequel. But why should you want to do that?

Diverse superheroes!!!!!!

Only one of the Power Rangers is white, and he’s just a good egg?? He just wants to be there for his friends and protect them. Besides that only one of them is white, one of them is a lesbian and another one is autistic (and he actually says he’s on the spectrum at the start of the film!). They aren’t stereotypes either and the girls are just as kick-ass as the guys.
There’s so much diversity in this film and they’re superheroes. Just thinking of all the little kids watching people like them being kick-ass superheroes saving the world makes me want to cry

Developed characters

The characters are all very realistic, have layers and are also quite different from each other. They all had their own problems they had to deal with, even though they all kind of put up a facade, making them even more realistic to me. They didn’t feel flat to me which has happened to me before with superhero movies.

While Jason is the leader and thus got a bit more screentime, the others also got a lot of screentime where we got to see them at home with their families and other characters besides the Power Rangers, which meant we got to see a different side to them and understand them better.

Plus they’re such fun kids!!

Friendship!!

I’m a sucker for friendship and these kids?? Love each other so much?? They would die for each other. I love how much focus they put on the relationships between each other. Even though it’s a 2-hour film, they still show us these kids that barely knew each other at the start become closer and closer and excuse me while I sob especially at the relationship between Jason and Billy.

Girls supporting girls!!

There’s no heterosexual explanation for this Power Rangers

The relationship between Trini and Kimberly!! It’s so cute!! While I definitely ship them romantically (Kimberly x Jason who???), I just love their friendship as well. They support each other, have each others back etc. And no unnecessary girl hate!! There are some girls hating on Kimberly, but they actually have a good reason.

Romance who?

While there’s some hinting at a (sadly heterosexual) relationship, it’s very much in the background and doesn’t take over the movie at all. The friendship between all the Power Rangers is much more important than any romance (and if we do get a sequel I hope it stays that way)

It’s just a solid movie??

I don’t get the criticism and negativity? Sure, it’s not a masterpiece, the villain was a bit meh, but?? It’s just a fun movie? I was never bored and I loved the entire atmosphere of the film. A lot of people have compared it to The Breakfast Club which I have never seen *hides in shame* but it’s a fun twist on the superhero genre. While there is some drama of course and things aren’t always looking great for them, overall I did feel like it was a positive movie which I personally really like. Superhero movies should be fun too!! And um?? Positive representation?? In a fun movie?? Come on guys!

So basically give it a chance please. Obviously everyone has different tastes but I really feel like people are being a bit too harsh on this one.

If you’ve seen Power Rangers, what did you think? If it doesn’t get a sequel, any similar movies/tv shows you’d recommend I could watch while I cry? Let me know in the comments!

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The Artsy Hufflehoe: Pride Edition 🌈

The second Artsy Hufflehoe! Maybe this is finally a ‘monthly’ feature that I will actually do every month haha

Since it’s Pride, I had to make The Artsy Hufflehoe a Pride edition this month. I chose six artists because I didn’t want this post to get too long, six artists equals six colours in the rainbow flag and it’s not like I won’t share more LGBTQIA+ artists in future posts.

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Frida Kahlo – Bisexual

There’s a big chance you’ve heard of Frida Kahlo, but did you know she was bisexual? I sure didn’t! I only found out a little while ago as I researched her for a post on International Women’s Day (not for this blog, but for the Blikopeners Tumblr. You may know I work as a Blikopener at the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam. Blikopeners are teens between 15 and 19 (unless like me you turn 20) who try to get other youth intersted in art, give tours, help with/organise workshops and events and some other cool stuff. So when you click on that link it will take you to our (Dutch) Tumblr)

I didn’t know much about her before that, though I did like the art that I had seen of her. After reading up on her I fell in love. She is such an icon: a feminist fighting against gender stereotypes (by smoking, boxing, winning tequila challenges from men and dressing as a man in family portraits) and racism and intolerance. She painted about themes like abortion, miscarriages, childbirth and breastfeading, which were often ignored or seen as taboo.

She was very open about her bisexuality, which was also seen in her work. Like her painting ‘Two Nudes in a Forest’, which shows two naked women, who are sitting next to each other on the ground. One of them is resting her head on the lap of the other. Frida gave the painting to her girlfriend Dolores del Rio.

Josephine Baker – Bisexual

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Okay guys, I’m in LOVE with Josephine Baker. She’s such a badass?? She’s well known as a dancer, singer and actress, but you know what else she was? A spy during World War Two.

Baker had openly supported Mussolini’s invasion of Ethiopia, so the Axis Powers (Germany, Italy and Japan) thought she was ‘one of them’. Baker used this to her advantage. Naturally she brought sheet music with her when she went on tour in Europe, but on a lot of those sheets were hidden messages written in invisible ink. She could also smuggle lots of stuff, like pictures of German military installations pinned to her underwear, because her baggage was never thoroughly checked. Because of her work as a spy she became a lieutenant in the Free French Air Force. After the war she received the Croix de Guerre (which was the first time an American Woman received it) and the Medal of Resistance. Like Frida she also fought against racism.

Another fun fact: Frida and Josephine had a relationship

Cassils – gender non-conforming trans masculine (they, them, their)

When you want to recreate the rainbow flag but the yellow hurts your eyes rip I apologise to your eyes I am suffering with you

Seen as one of the ‘ten transgender artists changing the landscape of contemporary art’ by the Huffington Post, Cassils got international recognition by using the body as a form of social sculpture. With their body as a sculpture, they fight the gender binary. Their art offers shared experiences of violence, representation, struggle and survival, often accompanied by immediacy, urgency and the transience of live performance.

Cassils doesn’t portray transgender as ‘crossing from one sex to another’, but as a continual process of becoming. Inspired by conceptualism, feminism, body art, gay male aesthetics, Cassils creates a serie of powerful, trained bodies for different performantive purposes. With sweat, blood and muscle strenght, Cassils creates a visual critique surrounding ideologies and histories.

Basically I’d  recommend you all to take a look at their website, because their work is really cool and powerful. My favourite is 103 Shots, based on the Pulse Shooting. It’s very powerful and emotional.

Zanele Muholi – Lesbian

Look at that another artists I’m currently obsessed with – who am I kidding, I’m obsessed with all of the people on this list. Maybe a little bit more with Zanele because her exhibition at the Stedelijk will open soon and I can’t wait. My wallet is scared though because I NEED BOOKS ON HER.

Why you ask? Well I’m glad you asked *finger guns*

Zanele Muholi is a photographer and visual activist. Her mission is ‘to rewrite a black queer and trans visual history of South Africa for the world to know of our resistance and existence at the height of hate crimes in SA and beyond’.

In her photography she researches, documents and depicts the black LGBTQI identity of contemporary South Africa. In her most recent series ‘Somnyama Ngonyama’ (Hail the Black Lioness) Muholi herself is pictured capturing the multiple roles that she assumes as a black lesbian woman. Through the high black-white contrasts in her pictures she emphasises her ‘blackness’ (the picture above is a part of this series).

If you happen to be in Amsterdam between July 8th and October 15th, you’ll be able to catch her exhibition at the Stedelijk. So grab that opportunity! (I know it sounds like I’m promoting the museum where I work but I promise I just want everyone to support Zanele’s work)

Mickalene Thomas – Lesbian

When you’re using your post you wrote for work for reference and find out you wrote Michalene instead of Mickalene rip I’m so sorry Mickalene 

Mickalene Thomas is an American feminist, filmmaker and artist. She explores ideas around beauty, race, sexuality, gender and feminity. In her work she shows that every body is beautiful. She is famous for her paintings depicting the sensuality of African-American women. She also depicts powerful (black) women such as her mother, celebrities and iconic art-historical figures, like Michelle Obama. This portrait is considered to be Michelle’s first solo portrait.

For some reason her site doesn’t work for me? I don’t know if that’s just my computer or if that’s the case for everyone, but you can also google her work which I obviously recommend. My favourite (probably? My favourites always change when it comes to art) is ‘Le déjeuner sur l’herbe: les trois femmes noires’, a photograph in which she recreated Manet’s ‘Le déjeuner sur l’herbe’

Amos Mac – Transgender

Amos Mac is a photographer who captures striking and playful images of gender non-conforming people, capturing their entire beings rather than solely their gender identities. His work is often colourful and abundant. Instead of examining transgender bodies or documenting transition, he wants to show the wholeness of his subjects.

I can’t pick a favourite, so just take a look at his website and look at all that beautiful photography. Seriously, all the series are worth it so I can’t choose. I was about to say ‘especially this series’ but um no I can’t choose. Sorry to disappoint, you’ll just have to look at all of them but it’s worth it I promise.

Amos also co-founded Original Plumbing, a magazine dedicated to trans male culture. It expanded to include apparel, events and accessories for the trans community and beyond.
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That’s it for now, but I will definitely share more in future posts. Now excuse me while I fangirl about all of these amazing artists and people

Any artists that you think I should know about? Let me know in the comments!

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Obligatory ‘I’m Back!’ Post

Helloooo it’s me. I was wondering if any of you remember me

Is my blogging slump over? Am I going to rock combining blogging and school this term?

– Me, April 30th 2017

hahahahaha no I did not ‘rock’ combining blogging and school this term. BUT HEY THIS TERM IS OVER. FINALLY. Don’t get me wrong, I liked this term, but about halfway in my friend and I found out we had failed one of our assignments last term so we had to redo it and well… I decided I really didn’t want to redo it again next year because I just don’t have the time, so I really wanted to focus on school and make sure that not only would we pass this assignment, I’d pass this term’s classes too. I don’t know yet if we’ve passed the assignment this time around, but I did pass all my other classes (well, I’m still waiting on one grade but I really don’t think I failed that one so) so it’s officially summer vacation! (you only get two chances for every assignment/exam in a year so if we failed again we can’t redo it this summer anyway)

Last year I was pretty active on the blog. I don’t know if I’ll be this year. It’s not that I don’t want to, but I want to restart slowly, figure out what I want to do, change my blog’s design and well, do other stuff too. Besides writing and reading (how I missed reading omg I barely read any books except comics because I was too exhausted) I want to spend some time with family and friends and visit lots of museums. I also need to prepare myself because I’ll be studying abroad next year for one semester. Have I mentioned this here yet?? Honestly school has eaten my brain I don’t know anything anymore.

BUT YEAH I’LL BE DOING ONE SEMESTER IN MANCHESTER NEXT YEAR.

To be honest I’m a lot more excited for next year than I was about this one. This year was super hectic and honestly I feel like getting a (mild) concussion at the end of the very first week of the school year was just a sign of the year that was to come. That sounds dramatic, but I just never got into my usual school rhythm after my concusion (and during it of course). So while I do look back on this year fondly as I made a great friend and this last term was a lot of fun, I’m glad it’s over and I’m ready for summer vacation. One preferably without stress.

Meaning that I’m also not going to pressure myself when it comes to this blog. I’m excited to get back to it, but I don’t know how active I’ll be. I just need to get back into that ole blogging routine. Oh how I miss those old times haha

I’VE MISSED ALL OF YOU SO MUCH THOUGH WHAT HAVE YOU BEEN UP TO TELL ME. Also I will slowly get around to answer all your comments and read up on your blogs.