Shea Coulée says her sickening All Stars 5 look was about so much more than obliterating the competition
This week’s Drag Race All Stars 5 saw Shea Coulée obliterate the competition with a sickening bejewelled body suit which, the queen has revealed, had a deeper meaning.
After finding herself safe in the All Stars 5 premiere, Shea Coulée proved this week that she didn’t come to play, she came to slay the competition.
The season nine queen took to the runway in a nude illusion bodysuit that she explained on Instagram was inspired by Sandro Botticelli’s “Birth of Venus”, “but BLACK”.
She shared a recreation of the iconic painting, which depicts the goddess Venus as a beautiful white woman emerging from the sea.
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“Love the Skin You’re In” is a concept that took a long time for me to come to terms with. I’ve been told that I’m too dark, too nappy, too femme to be considered beautiful. That’s why I wanted to fully embrace black beauty in this runway presentation. I also wanted to focus on my roots. I hope you like this recreation of Botticelli’s ‘Birth of Venus’ but BLACK. Starring all the members of Maison Couleé. @kenziecoulee, @bambibankscoulee, @babycouleé, and introducing the NEWEST member of the Haus, my baby, @khloecoulee! Make sure you go and give her a follow! Photo: myself & @danpolyak Art/Edit: @kindasupermario Body suit/Airbrushing: @troycford Stoning: @michaelbrambila using @crystalsbypreciosa Hair: @nathanjuergensen Nails: @bbygirlnails
Shea’s version celebrated Black beauty, showing her standing atop a scallop shell surrounded by her drag daughters.
Of the runway theme, “Love the skin you’re in”, Shea said that it took her a long time to “come to terms” with her own looks.
“I’ve been told that I’m too dark, too nappy, too femme to be considered beautiful,” she wrote.
“That’s why I wanted to fully embrace Black beauty in this runway presentation.”
Shea’s look left the judges and the entire internet gagging.
— Joey Nolfi (@joeynolfi) June 13, 2020
After clocking her first All Stars 5 win this week, she became the first queen in Drag Race herstory to win a $20,000 cash tip for beating lip sync assassin Alyssa Edwards.
Victory was bittersweet, as she was then forced to name the queen who would be leaving the competition, eliminating season one favourite Ongina.
Shea Coulée wants to give hope to young Black queers.
Ahead of her All Stars 5 debut, Shea release a statement noting her unease with celebrating her Drag Race return as the world grapples with systemic racism and violence against Black people.
She said that she had struggled “with a sense of guilt” over expressing her “desire to share and celebrate”, but had realised that “sharing successful Black stories is an important tool in creating hope for the younger queer POC”.
“I say all of this to express that my experience on [All Stars 5] was nothing short of pure MAGIC,” she added.
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“It challenged me, inspired me, renewed my love of drag in a deep and meaningful way, but most of all it gave me HOPE. Hope that I feel so many of us need right now.I can’t wait to share this experience with you.
An important message about AS5 pic.twitter.com/Pd4papgkos
— Shea Couleé (@SheaCoulee) June 5, 2020
“Our fight for justice isn’t over and our focus should remain on what’s most important. Just remember to make time to heal and feed your soul, and [All Stars 5] from what I heard is just what the doctor ordered.”
She added: “My name is Shea Coulée, and I didn’t come to play. I [came] to dismantle white supremacy, defund the police, return power and resources back to the people, uplift and amplify Black voices, and get that crown.”