Drag queen Aquaria weighed in on the album cover controversy
Yesterday (August 1), Travis Scott unveiled two pieces of cover artwork for his new album, Astroworld, in an Instagram post. The covers, shot by photographer David LaChapelle, each feature women in various provocative poses in front of a giant blow-up replica of the rapper’s head. But one of the covers – the alternative version – has a notable omission when compared with LaChapelle’s original: iconic trans model Amanda Lepore.
In LaChapelle’s artwork (above), Lepore can be seen coyly turning to the camera, to the left of the shot, and in the final picture posted on Instagram she has disappeared (most likely removed by a member of the rapper’s team).
Aquaria, the season 10 winner of Ru Paul’s Drag Race, was just one social media user quick to point out the edit, in a tweet that placed the pictures side by side.
Though the reason behind the omission of Lepore has not actually been given, Aquaria also attributed it to transphobia, adding: “Hi transphobia! I just saw transphobia gurl!”. Amanda Lepore, on the other hand, was more lighthearted about the matter, wondering why she was removed in an Instagram post, but adding, “A girl can’t help it! Too distracting for the eyes! Upstaged everyone in the photograph! Oh well... I love @david_lachapelle and @travisscott!”.