Kia LaBeija (b.1990) is a fine artist born and raised in the heart of New York City, Hell’s Kitchen. Her work explores her personal narrative and the relationship between space, trauma, and the female body. Her current work is composed of cinematic and vibrant autobiographical self-portraits. 24, her critically acclaimed series, is a sociopolitical commentary on the effects of growing up with HIV. Selections from 24 have been featured in Art, AIDS, America, a controversial touring exhibition investigating 30 years of art made in response to the AIDS epidemic and AIDS at Home at The Museum of the City of New York.
A performer by nature, Kia’s role as Overall Mother of the Iconic House of LaBeija has established her as a world renowned Voguer, dancer and performance artist. As an active member of New York City’s Ballroom community, she has explored the art of Voguing as a performance and community based practice. In 2016 she starred in indie rock band Pillar Point’s Music video Dove, which gained international acclaim.
She speaks frequently in public on the subject of HIV/AIDS and is an advocate for under represented communities living HIV positive including: long term survivors, women, minorities and children born with the virus. She has been invited to speak at The CUNY Graduate Center, New York University, and The Brooklyn Museum. She has conducted solo artist talks at The Studio Museum in Harlem and Stanford University. She has been honored in POZ magazine’s POZ 100 list of HIV/AIDS activists under 30, and HIV Plus Magazines 20 most amazing HIV Positive Women, featured in The Village Voice, VICE, Refinery29, Vanity Fair Italia and most recently graced the cover of the January 2018 issue of Artforum. She has studied at prestigious institutions such as The Juilliard School and The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. She is a graduate of the New School University, where she holds a Degree in The Arts.