It’s no coincidence that the word paint begins with pain. Expression is laborious; we contort our muscles, skin and appendages to externalize the turbulence roiling in our souls.
But one’s person distress is another’s epiphany, unfurling into a roadmap that guides fellow travelers from trauma to triumph.
Such is the case with Victor Langlois. Better known by his pseudonym FEWOCiOUS, Victor has documented his ascension from embattled youth to empowered artist.
He tells Christie’s auction house that the ages “12 and 13 were kind of a blur. I ran away from that bad household and I didn’t really get footing until I turned 14. And that’s when I really got into art heavily.”
In fact, drawing was a literal escape for Victor. He would bury his face in his sketchpad in order “to avoid eye contact” with would-be bullies.
Unfortunately, menace was all around him. After fleeing an abusive mother who “told me if I ever cut my hair, she’d never want to see me again,” Victor took up residence with his grandmother. He was physically stable but emotionally adrift.
Painting became Victor’s safe space. “Art was the one place where I could say everything.”
But some people still weren’t listening. His grandmother urged him to be a lawyer in order to make a solid living, but Victor got the last laugh, and it’s taking him all the way to the bank.
Victor became an overnight multimedia mogul, earning $2.16 million for his crypto creations at a recent auction.
Even in the face of unimaginable success, he stays focused on his art’s enduring impact. “Hopefully, maybe one day, a collector will be just in their house, looking at it, and reflect on their life and their journeys and what they had to go through.”
The jagged road of Victor’s voyage is culminating into a placid clearing where he can see the world anew… and we can view him through the lens of survivor and savior.
“Infinite percent, art has saved my life,” concludes Victor. But even that is an understatement. He has potentially saved the lives of countless other trans kids striving to make a connection, one click, brushstroke or stanza at a time.
Last modified: July 19, 2021