Founder, bklyn boihood
Jul 13, 2021
As the co-founder of bklyn boihood, a collective of queer and trans people of color, Holmes has been working to create safe, celebratory spaces in Brooklyn for more than 10 years. Born in Washington, D.C., and raised in Maryland, Holmes has said that they felt constrained by rigid gender norms, despite growing up in a largely supportive Black family. “Tomboy” and even “lesbian” didn’t quite resonate as labels, and they struggled to get comfortable with their queerness.
Bklyn boihood would start in Bed-Stuy in 2009 when Holmes and artist Genesis Tramaine (who is no longer affiliated) bonded over a desire to feel understood as masculine-of-center queer and trans people of color. The initial idea: create a calendar celebrating the representation of that queerness with a diversity of models, photographers and designers. In the intervening years, bklyn boihood has amassed more than 50,000 online followers, published six calendars, and released an award- winning anthology called “Outside the XY: Queer Black and Brown Masculinity.”
By day, Holmes is a communications strategist at the female-led firm Resonance, a creative consultant, youth mentor and event producer. Holmes had previously been the director of community programs at the Museum of Contemporary African Diaspora Arts (MoCADA). The through-line in all of their work is creating “pathways for expression, community, love as wealth.”