Billy Porter: The Gender Bending Fashion Icon Tearing up the Red Carpet

Billy Porter has had an incredible year.

First starring as Pray Tell in Ryan Murphy’s hit TV show, Pose, a look into the world of 1980’s drag ball culture, Porter then worked with Murphy again playing a wizard in the Apocalypse cycle of the immensely popular American Horror Story.

His work in Pose earned him Best Actor in a Drama Series awards at both the Critics’ Choice Awards and The Golden Globes.

However, despite not winning either award Billy Porter did not let this stop him from being the centre of attention at both award shows.

This 2019 awards season, Porter has quickly established himself as a fashion icon who consistently steps out on the red-carpet ready to shock.

At the Critics’ Choice Awards he wore a custom Rinat Brodach silky, chocolate coloured suit with a white shirt, gold collar tips and a big satin bow. The outfit was paired with Jeffrey West shoes.

Billy Porter at the 2019 Critics’ Choice Awards

When discussing his look Billy stated that he likes to work with “emerging designers”.

“Young designers, like Rinat, bring such incredible passion, raw talent and energy to collaborations. As an artist myself, I believe strongly in giving opportunity and exposure to new talent. And this jumpsuit is fierce!”

At the Golden Globes, Porter then took it up a notch. Bridal and evening-wear designer Randi Rahm created an embroidered fitted suit for Porter with a beautiful cape to match. Porter twirled and spun around the red carpet as the dazzling outfit took centre stage.

Billy Porter at the 2019 Golden Globes

The look was so stunning that even nearby celebrities such as Elizabeth Moss had to stop posing for the cameras to take in Porter’s surreal ensemble.

Porter’s foray into fashion and storming the red carpets has been a refreshing and welcome addition to the 2019 awards season.

the majority of male celebrities fail to bring anything exciting to red carpet events and their appearance has felt under-whelming in comparison to their female peers.

In recent months this has started to change and LGBT+ male celebrities such as the Queer Eye guys, Ezra Miller and Cody Fern, have all started to bring their own unique flair to the traditional red carpet attire.

What’s more these fashion icons are not just tearing up the runways, they’re tearing up the rule book on male fashion, and Porter is leading the pack.

Stepping out for the American Film Institute Awards luncheon, Porter wore a sleek, golden, floor-length gown partnered with a metallic gold blazer.

Billy Porter at the 2019 American Film Institute Awards Luncheon

Porter stated that his fashion sense has started to get a “gender-fluid sensibility” and his characters in both Pose and Kinky Boots helped him get in touch with his feminine side.

However, none of these moments were quite as jaw-dropping as when Porter stepped out on the Oscars’ red carpet last night. From the waist up, Porter wore a smart, velvet, black-tie suit. The kind expected to be worn by the majority of men attending these awards shows. But from the waist down, Porter’s garment extended into a flowing, beautiful black dress. The tuxedo gown was designed by Christian Sirano.

Billy Porter at the 2019 Academy Awards

The outfit was both classically masculine and elegantly feminine. It was astounding and history making. The peak of gender bending. Without even being nominated for any awards, Porter proved that his mere presence can steal the show.

Billy Porter is an immense talent. The kind who can have viewers laughing from just one mere look and then have them crying not a moment later. Here’s hoping we see much more of him on future red carpets.

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