Three emerging queer voices have been chosen by Instagram to create and share content as part of the social media giant’s latest spotlight series, This is Me: Gen Queer. Generation Z is the queerest generation yet, with some surveys showing that only half of Gen Z-ers are attracted exclusively to members of the opposite sex, with the ‘B’ for bisexual in LGBT (including the ‘P’ for pansexual if that’s your bag) representing more people than all the other letters in the ever-expanding initialism combined. This, incidentally, is something that we wholeheartedly support.
In a press statement, Instagram commented: “There are now a record number of LGBTQ+ characters represented in media, but there are still so many stories untold and so much more to be done to improve positive representation of our LGBTQ+ community – especially intersectional and regional voices.”
The Gen Queer creators featured by are founder of Newcastle-based Queer Canny Collective Ella Willis (@_ellawillis) intersex activist Dani Coyle (@inter_sexy), and Scottish art director and photographer Furmaan Ahmed (@furmaan.ahmed).
Let’s meet them:
Ella Willis (she/they)
Ella is a 22 year old non-binary content creator, focusing on queerness and autism on both Instagram and Tiktok. She lives and works in Newcastle-upon-Tyne in the north-east of England, where she is part of a team that runs a queer collective in the city and is also an illustrator! Ella started making content in early 2021 to speak their mind about what was important to her, and that is what she is still continuing to do with social media.
Dani Coyle (she/they)
Dani is an intersex artist, activist and academic currently reading for an MSt in Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies at the University of Oxford.
Like their corporeality, her practice transgresses boundaries of media, context and discipline. Her interests include digital and social media, activist art, gender, queer and feminist theory, and fashion, graphic and interior design. Their activism is mainly situated within cultural spheres, having been published in i-D, Hunger, Teen Vogue, Antidote and Perfect Magazine.
In 2020, she was named as a TEDxLondon Pride champion and was also included on Dazed Magazine’s Dazed100, a list spotlighting “100 of the world’s most creative, outspoken, and passionate next-gen names”. Their projects Inter_face, an intersex documentary portrait series, and Inter_view, an intersex podcast series, aim to humanise and depathologise the rhetoric surrounding intersex embodiment to one of celebration, autonomy and authorship.
Furmaan Ahmed (they/them)
Furmaan is a multi-disciplinary artist from Glasgow who creates images, set designs and live installations that span across the worlds of fine art, fashion and film.
They create sites that act as “emotional knowledge exchanges” for queer POC and trans bodies. Referencing ancient places, sci fi nature and hybrid futurism – they create experiences that feel like glitches in reality.
Furmaan is interested in world building through the lens of a brown and trans person. In their collaborative practise, Furmaan has envisioned worlds and campaigns with WeTransfer, Willow Smith, Tate Modern, Sadler Wells, Jupiter Artland, Hermès, Shygirl, SOPHIE, Sasha Velour and David Lachapelle.
Furmaan is a fine-art graduate of Central Saint Martins and in 2017 was the recipient of the Robertsons Scholarship and the British Fashion Council New Waves Creatives Award in 2021.