Celebrating Pride: Queer Artists and their Art

Celebrating Pride: Queer Artists and their Art

Art has always been a medium to showcase vulnerability, reality, and deeply embedded self-expression. And queer art is no different. It tells stories of struggle and survival, and hence provides the LGBTQIA+ community with the long-overdue representation that it deserves. Following are some Indian artists who are a part of the queer community and channel their individuality and pride through their art.

Param Sahib
Fashion designer and illustrator

Param’s approach to fashion and art is quite quirky, out-of-the-box, and self-reflexive. His fashion illustrations are usually dominated by the portrait of a modern, queer Sikh man. With the use of jewellery, makeup and henna in his illustrations, his work is an unapologetic acceptance of his identity. As you scroll through his Instagram, you will further encounter themes of same-sex marriage, motherhood for trans women, violence against the community and queer rights.

Celebrating Pride: Queer Artists and their Art R: Param

L: Veer Misra

R: Param

Cartel Madras
Music duo

The duo of Indo-canadian sisters, Priya and Bhagya Ramesh, identify as queer and pansexual respectively. They classify their music as Goonda Rap, which is a self-created genre. This genre is sexually expansive, sonically aggressive and a homage to the music to which they grew up listening. Age of the Goonda is their second EP, a sonically expanded follow-up to their previous EP, Trapistan, which featured the party-down hit Pork & Leek. Age of the Goonda is a direct call to arms for those who must fight against being considered as second-class citizens: immigrants, women of colour, LGBTQ+ people, and Desis (a.k.a. Westernized Indians).

Anureet Watta
Poet and aspiring filmmaker

Writing is an imaginative arena for them, full of possibilities. They believe in writing poetry that shall serve as a history of queer existence and the way it operates in today's heteronormative atmosphere. They wish to see more queer stories, particularly those about queer joy, wrath, and loneliness. Their poetry does not just talk of the queer melancholy, but also of the glorious joy it brings to the person. Watta also recently released Kinaara, a short film about two women falling in love during the 1947 partition.

Celebrating Pride: Queer Artists and their Art Cartel Madras

Cartel Madras

Veer Misra
Visual artist and illustrator

Dominant with hues of pink and undertones of blue, Veer’s art depicts the softer side of homosexuality, lying beneath the mostly hyper-sexualised imagery that surrounds us. Queerious, one of his graphic pieces, combines elements of mythology, sexuality, and individual discovery. His work, thus, beautifully explores ideas of love and intimacy in queer storytelling.

Text Samridhi Singh
Date 16-06-2022