Indya Moore made a powerful fashion statement when they hit the red carpet at the Daily Front Row’s annual Fashion Media Awards on Thursday, September 5. The model, activist, and Pose star was seen donning a colorful Oscar de la Renta gown with gold shimmers, accentuated by an even more eye-catching accessory, one with a deeply significant meaning.
Hanging from Indya’s ears were 16 frames showing the faces of black transgender women who were murdered this year in the United States. (The most recent 17th victim was remembered with a frame they carried in their hands throughout the evening.) As noted by W Magazine, the earrings were designed by Areeayl Yoseefaw of Beads Byaree, and the entire look was put together with the help of Indya’s stylist, Ian Bradley.
According to a post on Beeds Byaree’s Instagram page, Areeayl conceptualized the earrings earlier this year to honor her late godmother. The designer was later approached by Ian to create a similar pair of earrings in order to remember the names and faces of the trans women who were killed this year in the United States. “The issue is so pressing that after creating the earring and three days before the event, Bailey Reeves, a 17 year old girl from Baltimore was killed,” Areeayl wrote on social media, adding: “@indyamoore’s jewelry served as an altar and their speech was both a prayer for the future and a call to action. In their hour of celebration they put their trans sisters in the forefront. They spoke for those who cannot and became a light for everyone.”
Indya also spoke out about this important issue at Thursday’s event, where they were the recipient of the Cover of the Year award for their appearance in Elle’s June 2019 issue (and the magazine's first trans cover star).
“Some of you may be uncomfortable with the politics of my speech,” Indya said, per The Hollywood Reporter. “Right now the Supreme Court is voting on whether or not trans people can access employment, shelter and health care in the same ways that you all have access…it’s hard to celebrate being celebrated at a time when people like me are being murdered.”
They went on to note that “existence that requires bravery is not freedom. A life that requires bravery is not freedom.” Indya’s speech also made it clear that they were sharing the award with the most marginalized voices from within the trans community. “I accept this award in honor of the truth that the best award — the award we all deserve — is to be able to get home safe,” they emphasized. “I accept this award in good faith that my recognition doesn’t lead to the erasure of other trans and GNC [gender nonconforming] folks who also deserve healthcare, housing, safety, and visibility; magazine covers, runways, leading films and TV roles, doctor’s degrees, high school diplomas, college educations, and families; acknowledgement and respect. Not just when we’re on the covers of magazines, but when we are in the streets, when we are poor.”
Indya has continuously made it clear that they plan to use their platform for a higher cause; in addition to using social media to bring awareness to their hundreds of thousands of followers, Indya has also taken to the streets and raised their voice alongside protesters, like the time they spoke at a rally in New York City to demand justice for trans women. ‘This is what I want to utilize my existence for,” Indya told The Cut last year. “I want to be a conduit for healing.”
- Indya Moore Isn’t Trying to Be a Savior
- Cory Booker Called for Protection of Black Transgender Women During the Democratic Debate
Originally Appeared on Teen Vogue