PHOTOGRAPHY KAREN STANLEY - MUA A'WHORA - WORDS EMILIE LOUIZIDES & KAREN STANLEY - SPECIAL THANKS PROFILE TALENT
RuPaul’s Drag Race UK has been the main topic of pop-culture conversation, so we obviously had to have a chat with the season’s self-proclaimed fashion queen, A’Whora. With two wins and zero bottom placements until her elimination, which put her in fifth place, A’Whora consistently slayed with flawless makeup, genderbending looks, and sultry sex appeal. Photographer Karen Stanley teamed up with A’Whora to document her take on the ‘Family Resemblance’ challenge. This iconic look, which would have aired on the show but unfortunately had to be scrapped due to Covid regulations, was too good to go to waste. A’Whora breaks down her look, talks family, and what we can expect from her in the future.
ALL FASHION BY HOUSE OF NARCISSISM
Emilie Louizides: How would you introduce yourself to someone who is a complete stranger to drag?
A’Whora: A legend. A hound. And a full-time bitch!
EL: What does A’Whora share with her out-of-drag counterpart?
A: Creativity, the ability to re-imagine things for what they are! I have a fucked mind that likes to look at something or someone and manipulate/distort its originality to be something far from what it was. I was always intrigued by making people question!
Karen Stanley: How important is family to you, be it biological or chosen, and your drag? Do the two correlate?
A: Family is everything and I think it’s very important and essential to ensure you have some form of a unit around you when you go into such a cutting industry, working in drag is hard and faces you with many realities that many people probably don’t understand ‘comes’ with the job, so it’s very crucial to have that support system around you as everything is unpredictable with drag! I’m fortunate in that my family support and believe in my work and so do my friends, but I know for others it isn’t that easy!
EL: What would you like people to know about this look that ultimately didn’t get its moment on the show?
A: The original theme of this was the term ‘catty’, it’s often a word my Nan used to describe drag queens, so I had cat eye lenses and martini glasses filled with milk for the main stage to knock on the idea whilst also paying homage to Kat Slater on Eastenders! I wanted that cheap market vibe paired with sex, drugs and Greggs sausage rolls!
KS: How was your overall experience on Drag Race? Was it what you expected?
A: It was everything and more! I’m very thankful for the time and opportunity I was given to be on the show, and from it I’m sure there will be many more ahead, it’s only erections from here forward baby!
EL: What would you like to see more of going forward from UK drag queens and artists in general?
A: To have some fucking FUN! We have all been kept [away] and locked in the cupboard during lockdown that it’s time now to get back to what we love and bring so much joy and laughter to people and the night life! We have all missed it so much and that’s where British drag thrives and drives so I can’t wait to be back in the clubs and pubs necking shots and turning lewks. We have all been deprived for so long that we are more hungry than Lawrence Chaney! I’m just so excited to hit the road with all the girls and to meet so many more new people, drag lives off others being around us and encouraging us! It’s a constant learning from others!
EL: What are you most proud of?
A: Everything! I’m so proud of every single thing I’ve done, I was authentically myself and have been throughout all my career! I stand by being unapologetically me.
KS: What’s one thing we can expect from A’Whora in the short term and one thing we can expect in the long term?
A: I don’t see anything for me being short term, everything I do I make sure it has an everlasting impression! So, I’d say in the long term you’ll see me making my skid mark across the world, I’m here to play but I’m also here to stay and change things up a little, who knows, I may be on cereal boxes next week and Vogue the following! Drag is about doing it all.
E: And finally, what is your favorite F Word?
A: Favorite F Word: Being fattered, meaning fat and shattered. Lawrence Cheney taught me that!