REDEFINE HEALTH AND FITNESS: HAZKEL BROWN CHRISTIE
“Redefining Health and Fitness means to dismantle the structures of what beauty and fitness are, moving away from stereotypes of weight and muscle mass.” Performance artist, Hazkel Brown Christie on redefining health and fitness. The model who performs under the name, Homosinner also talks queer run spaces, the future of beauty and self-actualization.
Shot by Nicolas Bloise @papi.prada
QUEER FITNESS and BEAUTY
To protect oneself and “fit in” we often resort to limiting our expression to conventional notions of beauty, ie building muscle. Conversely as a self preservation mechanism you use make-up. Talk to us about the empowerment you discover through make-up?
I use makeup as a tool of self-expression, resistance and empowerment. As an Afro-Indigenous from Costa Rica, I found that through makeup the conversation of where I might be and racial ambiguity is controled by highlighting aspects of my identity such through the use of optical illusion, camouflage and Avant-Garde makeup as an extension of my performance art practice through Homosinner.
What does “Redefine Health and Fitness” mean to you?
Redefining Health and Fitness means to dismantle the structures of what beauty and fitness are, moving away from stereotypes of weight and muscle mass. As someone that once was over 220 lbs the impact that being told that being slim and toned is beautiful made me feel extremely uncomfortable on my own body. Having to lose weight for health reasons and finding the right balance and happiness with my own body changed the way I saw health and fitness.
Remove mirrors in gyms. For or Against?
I believe that they should be blackout [mirrors] giving the individual the choice on whether or not they want to monitor themselves and their progress by using the mirror, whilst still giving the options to those that find it toxic or discouraging to monitor themselves with it.
Research illustrates that sporting team environments improve the mental health of LGBTQI+ individuals, yet health and fitness spaces are often the first point of queer shaming and are triggering for members of the queer collective. Given the “bro” culture of gyms and sporting spaces how do you suggest we promote fitness within our own community?
By creating queer spaces run by queer individuals for queer individuals, highlighting the queer experience.
“@Cupidsvault’s work using organic materials exploring the decaying and the performative aspect of makeup as momentary creates an even bigger conversation on social dynamics within a capitalistic nation.”
What would you say to someone who doesn’t feel worthy to invest in themselves and devote and prioritize time for self-care and self-actualization?
I would tell them that devoting 5-15 minutes a day to one’s self-care would drastically improve one’s productivity, wellbeing and overall self.
Outside the context of fitness what’s a “taboo” topic that the queer community should discuss?
I feel like what’s happening in the Amazon in Brazil is something that not only the queer community but everyone as a whole should be talking about. The environmental and social impact that this is going to have on all of us as well as the indigenous folks that have actively worked to preserve this sacred land.
Who is changing the game in beauty artistry?
@Cupidsvault and @Cherry.jaymes are two individuals that I feel are redefining makeup and fashion. Cupid’s work using organic materials exploring the decaying and the performative aspect of makeup as momentary creates an even bigger conversation on social dynamics within a capitalistic nation as a 19-year-old queer individual of color navigating this world and industry. Cherry’s openness on the topics of fat-shaming, tokenization of the fashion industry for more press coverage is extremely important, as a trans woman of color, Cherry is pioneering and inspiring many throughout the world.
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Read our previous interview with Hazkel, where he discusses faggotry, racial identity, his youth and much more.
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