Fatima Jamal’s confidence is infectious. In life and on social media, the artist and dancer boldly asserts her presence, unbothered by any opinions but her own. Her self-assuredness comes, in part, from her journey towards self-acceptance, and when Jezebel sat with her at her home in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, last month, it became immediately clear that now is her time to shine.
Jamal has made a cottage industry of the idea of “FatFemme,” a reference to her ongoing documentary project, “No Fats No Femmes.” It’s a visual protest against the biases of being fat, disabled or having HIV within the LGBTQ community. Through that work, as well as her transfixing Instagram, her persona has grown within New York City’s ballroom community, which has helped her land appearances on FX’s popular Pose. She’s also been spotted on the best and most interesting/inclusive runways of New York Fashion Week, sporting brands like Telfar and modeling for Gypsy Sport.
Although she continues to receive attention within the fashion industry and ballroom scenes, Jamal told us that it’s through her continued struggle of being a black queer femme that she’s found the ability to use her voice to promote gender equality and racial justice. Check out more in her episode of Styling, above.
Senior Producer: Tracy Thompson. Associate Producer: Kayra Clouden. Director of Photography: Santiago Garcia.