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Interview


Muriel

Do you know who's the new champion of LGBTQ+ rights and body positivity? The beautiful and colourful Muriel. We at TheCornerZine have had the immense pleasure of meeting her in the happiest month of the year, and we've got to know a girl full of ideas and with a burning desire to speak up. Don't waste another second and find out more about Muriel, our LGBTQ+ icon of the month!

Hello Muriel, if you had to describe yourself in three words, what would they be and why?

I’d describe myself as empathetic and a creative dreamer, because I was born under the sign of Pisces and I often like to fantasise about my future and goals. I also want to understand the stories of the people I meet and, finally, I like to create things. Taking videos, drawing, listening to music, playing dress up, decorating the walls of my room....everything and more!

image with artdirection
image with artdirection

I’d love to live in a freer way. It may be a cliché, but you just have one life and it's absurd that some people think they have the right to decide for your body, your tastes, your appearance and lifestyle.

When did you realise the job of YouTuber could be the right one for you? How did you start your career?

I started uploading videos on YouTube in 2012, but I began to take it more seriously in 2015, because my community grew more and more!


Muriel, when did you really understand who you are? And, above all, did you have moments in your life when you didn't accept yourself for what you were and tried to be a different person?

Maybe that moment still has to come, I think life is a constant discovery. Of course I can now say that I have everything under control, but when I was younger I often felt wrong, like the black sheep of the group. Anyhow, I never tried to change and homologate. I preferred to suffer and remain myself, instead of wearing a mask.


Was there anyone who advised you to leave it alone? On the contrary, who, or what, was your source of motivation, making you understand that what you were doing was really useful and right?

To be honest with you, no, nobody tried to stop me. I was and still am fortunate enough to be surrounded by fantastic friends and relatives. Maybe, sometimes the question is: "Are you sure you can earn enough? Isn't it better to find another job?", but nothing more...in the end, this is a new and sometimes complex job to understand for those who know nothing about it. My community played a fundamental role: growing more and more, I understood the weight of my words and numbers, the impact they could have on some people's lives. I like the idea of being able to help those who may feel wrong, like an old wise woman basically.


You came out on YouTube in 2016. How did you get the idea to tell something so important on such a channel? How did you approach your audience?

My channel started as an online logbook, and I’ve always been open about my life. In fact, as soon as I accepted my sexual orientation, I decided to share it online, but in a very lighthearted way. I don’t even consider it as a proper coming out. The video was entitled “The Three Things You Don’t Know About Me”, or something like that. I simply shared three new facts, such as having dropped out of university and being attracted to girls.


Recently, the singer Lizzo published a video on Instagram, where she expressed her will to have the body that she prefers and that makes her feel good both inside and outside. What do you think the greatest body positivity-related teaching you gave your community was?

Surely, patience. They often ask me: "How can you be so sure of yourself?" and it’s difficult to find an answer! Mind you, it's not that I'm this self-esteem bomb, but I learned to talk to myself, becoming aware of my body and stopping insulting myself all the time. To achieve all of this, you need to have a lot of patience, respect your time and not be in a hurry to find solutions to your problems.


This year, there’ll be no parade, or better, it won’t be the same way as last year. Anyhow, if you had to parade this month, what would be the first cause that you’d really like to address?

For sure, the transgender one. We talk about it very little here in Italy or, if we talk about it, it’s always due to the stereotype of the trans prostitute. When talking about the LGBTQ+ community, it always seems to me that reference is made to love and sexual orientation, but never to gender identity or transgender people. It'd be really nice to be able to share the right information and raise awareness also on this topic.


And what outfit would you show off at this Pride parade?

Many, many, many, many glitters. I won't say anything else.


What do you think of all those people who believe this parade is only and exclusively a circus or carnival? What’s its importance today?

The Pride parade is many things, it’s a party to celebrate and a tradition to remember who fought for us, but above all it’s important for the civil rights that are still missing, not only in Italy, but also in the rest of the world! In addition to this, now it's not only for the people belonging to the LGBTQ+ community, but for all the individuals who want to take a day to celebrate themselves and feel "proud" about themselves!


Do you think perfection exists? If so, what is it?

Maybe yes, maybe no. Each one of us has a different perception of perfection, it's a concept that varies according to your sensitivity and taste. Nobody can truly decree its concrete existence.


What's the most beautiful comment you’ve ever received? How about the one that hurt you, but perhaps also strengthened you?

There are many beautiful comments, it’s too difficult to pick one. Surely knowing that I can, somehow, make people feel at ease excites me. Among the ugliest ones, I'd say death threats, because as far as I’m concerned I wouldn't wish death on my worst enemy.


What advice do you give to all the people who are bullied both on social media and in real life?

It’s difficult to give advice, those are situations that everyone manages in their own way. I think it's too easy to say: "Ignore them”. Sometimes words can seriously hurt, so much so that you can hear them rumbling in your head for years. Let time take its course, and eventually it'll pass. Sooner or later in life, you'll meet special people, so much so that you'll be able to forget all that badness. Once I finished high school, I found true friendship, and stopped caring about negative comments, because I knew that I was surrounded by wonderful people who loved me, and that was enough. I didn't want any more negativity in my life. Anyhow being able to leave negativity behind takes time, it's a long journey!


From the 13th to the 18th of June, you published, on your accounts, the “BE YOU” project, featuring some members of your community. Can you explain to me what it’s about?

Since there will be no parades, I thought it would’ve been nice to try and involve my community in this project that I’ll be carrying out, on my Instagram profile, for the whole month of June. So I decided, together with photographer and friend of mine Chiara Glionna, to create collages with portraits of some members of my community. Featuring their answers to the question: “What does it mean to be yourself?”. The name of the project came from this: I didn't want to be the only one to speak and convey messages in this project, I wanted to widen the circle of people and I couldn't help thinking about something for my community as well.


Muriel, if you had to make a wish, what would it be?

A wish? I have at least 10. I’d love to live in a freer way. It may be a cliché, but you just have one life and it's absurd that some people think they have the right to decide for your body, your tastes, your appearance and lifestyle. I just wish that people weren’t so shawl sometimes, and realise that, at the end of the day, we’re all on the same boat and living human beings.


image with artdirection
image with artdirection

I learned to talk to myself, becoming aware of my body and stopping insulting myself all the time. To achieve all of this, you need to have a lot of patience, respect your time and not be in a hurry to find solutions to your problems.

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