Mixed media (gouache, water colour and ink) on Felix Schoeller True Rag Etching
427 X 630 mm (original artwork is framed in one-off arched frame with bronze plaque as per image)

Prints are on Felix Schoeller True Rag Etching 310 gsm
437 x 655mm (with added white border for square format)
Edition of 15
Hand-signed, dated and numbered

Born Rupaul Andre Charles in 1960, RuPaul was raised in California and moved to Atlanta to study the performing arts at the age of fifteen. In the 80s he often performed at the Celebrity Club with his punk band, Wee Wee Pole and gained national exposure by dancing as an extra in the music video for “Love Shack” by the B-52’s.

The young performer settled in New York City where he became a popular fixture in the LGBTQI+ club scene participating in gender bender-style performances, and made multiple television appearances. In 1993, he recorded his first musical album and rose to national prominence with the dance track hit “Supermodel (You better work)”. His continued success as a drag queen landed him a modeling contract with MAC cosmetics and his own talk show in 1996 – The RuPaul Show – where he would be the first openly gay host to ever appear on US television. Throughout his career RuPaul has championed the visibility of LGBTQI+ expression and formulated RuPaul’s Drag Race in 2008, where drag queens would compete to become “America’s next drag superstar”, paving the way for tolerance and pushing LGBTQI+ culture into the mainstream. The show has run for 14 seasons, has three spin-off seasons and many international versions, winning 14 daytime emmys.

During his send-off on each episode of Drag Race, he addresses contestants and fans with the rhetorical adage, “If you can’t love yourself, how in the hell are you going to love somebody else?” He encourages authenticity through self-invention and non-conformity, revolutionizing the portrayal of LGBTQI+ people on screen.