Why did you create the ‘Bi in the 2000s™’ illustrative series?
I decided to create and launch the ‘Bi in the 2000s™’ illustrative series on Instagram on Bisexuality Visibility Day on 23rd September, 2020, because I felt there was a real need for more representation of bisexuality, and I thought that art was a great way to show how I felt, share my experiences and also contribute to discussions around bisexuality.
When creating the ‘Bi in the 2000s™’ series, why did you decide to paint about your experiences as a teenager and young adult, growing up in the UK in the 2000s at the time, as well as your opinions about bisexuality now?
I realised that it’s not always that easy to write about the lack of representation of bisexuality in the present, as an isolated series of events, without also looking at the past and what it was like (for me, at least) growing up in the UK at the time. It was actually really useful for me to go backwards and think about what representation was around, growing up at the time, and ask myself: when did I start to feel like I wasn’t represented? And how can I heal from the times where I felt ‘there aren’t many people ‘like me’’? It was incredibly valuable to re-evaluate the views I had about myself as someone that identifies as bisexual, acknowledging that some of these ideas were formed about my identity from quite a young age, and the painting really helped me on a lot of levels with this process.
How do you feel now, having shared the series on social media platforms?
I feel proud to be able to contribute to these discussions around bisexuality, and I hope that the artwork reaches people that are interested in finding out more about these kind of themes. I’m aware that some of the things that I’m talking about in series, particularly around the lack of visibility of bisexuality in everyday spaces, others may have experienced in a different way. I’m mindful of that fact that everyone will have been on a different journey to mine, with experiences unique to them, and I think it’s impossible for me to talk on behalf of anybody else. One of the reasons I thought this series was needed in particular, was that sometimes censorship can create an environment where topics stop being talked about, or can feel embarrassing or a sense of shame to be talked about, even as a concept, let alone as something we may identify as.
I’m proud to be able to talk more about bisexuality, and try to normalise talking about bisexuality, as indeed a lot of people have already been working towards for many years. I’m aware that I’m in place of privilege to be able to talk about these kind of topics, as I’m conscious that unfortunately there are certain parts of the world where it’s still not safe, or very much frowned upon, to talk about these kind of things. I’m always grateful for the opportunity to share a snap-shot of my journey in this 9-part series, and I feel hopeful for the future that people are already starting to talk about these kind of themes, and have been doing so for some time.
How can people find out more about the ‘Bi in the 2000s™’ illustrative series?
As well as the posts on Instagram, Twitter and TikTok, you can subscribe to my Anna Frances Healing YouTube channel, where you’ll find a series of 9 Vlog videos about me talking about each individual painting in the series.
Can we expect more content around Bisexuallty on your Anna Frances Healing social media platforms?
Yes, absolutely. There is a ‘Bi in Poetry™’ series in the pipeline, where I explore themes around bisexuality using creative writing. Be sure to follow my social media channels to stay up-to-date 😊