Gender stories — Arabia Felix first donned make-up aged ten in his bedroom, playing alone as children often do. Today, aged twenty-three, hundreds of thousands take joy in his artistry, through videos on YouTube and tutorials on drag enjoyed by adoring fans around the globe. An online community may revere him, but at home in Kuwait, this life remains a closely guarded secret. Kuwaiti legislation punishes "imitating the appearance of a member of the opposite sex" with imprisonment or fines. His art, drag alter ego, and sexuality are all outlawed, and yet Arabia remains defiant. His make-up may embody traditional Arabian beauty, but it’s also his armour - and he’s preparing to fight.
Written by: Arabia Felix / Michael Segalov