Freddie Lewis, 21, is a trans musician who curated the Pale Pink Works of Art exhibition, inspired by his relationship with gender. Displayed at Dareshack in Bristol, it was put on display to mark the drop of Lewis’ newest record. Lewis recurrently shares his struggles as a trans man in his art and social media. He seeks to bring positivity and pride to the trans narrative and spark a wholesome conversation on the struggles of trans men. He has opened up in the past about his experiences as a man with periods.
Lewis came out in 2018 and decided to transition. He explored gender for a couple of years and decided that this was the best course of action. He mentioned how his gut reaction was always to hate his body and thus began testosterone in 2019. He went top surgery that year, usually known as a double mastectomy. Lewis expressed that pale pink as a color represents feminity and trying to unburden himself of the pressure to perform masculinity the correct way.
What triggered a new wave of self-loathing in Lewis was that his body was still doing the things it did in the past despite going through surgery. Namely, bleeding. Self-shaming became his mindset as, despite transitioning, he still experienced menstruations.
Lewis mentioned how he hated having a period, especially using a men’s toilet while having one. He used to carry small sandwich bags for waste disposal due to the lack of sanitary bins.
The Pale Pink Works of Art exhibition featured poetry open mic, and live music. These dimensions of being trans and deconstructing toxic masculinity are explored through pale pink. His music advocates for trans pride, and the colorful paintings featured in the exhibition portray a maturing and ever-changing gender identity.
A song that notoriously expresses Lewis’ feelings about his identity and finding pride in everything his body does is his newly dropped single, Bell Jar. He writes his songs to share his story with all those who need a proud trans man as a role model and understand that they, too, can be proud of themselves.
Among some of his songs, we can mention his single Growing Pains, Cinderella Little Less Love (part of Lilac Underpass mixtape). His works also feature b-side poetry, a big part of Freddie Lewis’ unique art style.