We had the pleasure of interviewing Ada Ada Ada, a Digital and Hybrid Artist. Between January 2021 and March 2023, Ada worked on her Instagram-based art project called the ‘in transitu project’ where she documented her transition process on a weekly basis. As she included pictures of her nipples, this documentation also became a #freethenipple project. The goal: wait for Instagram to ban her pictures as ‘female nipples’ (female nipples are not allowed on Instagram while male nipples are). On March 30th 2023, it finally happened. This project ‘is a challenge to the Instagram moderation protocols and an exploration of how gender is perceived by algorithms’.

Additionally, she also sent her images to so-called ‘gender recognition artificial intelligences’. While they have no accurate basis on recognising gender, the AI programmes tell her whether they think that she is ‘male’ or ‘female’. Ada subsequently posted the weekly results on her Instagram as a way of ‘challenging the power structures of the people who make them’.

What inspired you to start documenting your transition on social media?

Ada Ada Ada: I tried to remould my identity, trying to figure out what it is that makes me happy. I came to the conclusion that making art really makes me happy. I was doing it before but never as a career. I have personal experience that I can bring into my art… and I wanted to document my transition. I thought it would be fun to challenge Instagram’s rules of what a female nipple is, which is why I decided to post them. For me, it’s also about showing off what being trans is actually like to people who might not know what it can look like. What I enjoy most is hearing from other trans people. It seems like it’s something that resonates a lot with trans people and that just fills me with a lot of joy.

Ada Ada Ada on her journey with her gender identity

During the interview, Ada opened up about her journey with her gender identity which started back in January 2021. Ada had already been educated on trans issues from following many trans activists on social media. Subsequently, she started experimenting with her gender expression. She found ‘comfort’ in her own body in a way that she had not experienced before. Many trans people describe this feeling as a ‘veil being lifted from your eyes, and you see colour for the first time’. This is exactly how Ada felt about her trans identity. Coming out as trans was ‘one of the best things that has ever happened in my life’.

All of her exposure to trans people and trans issues was through the internet. While she took trans identities very seriously, at first, she was unable to do the same for herself. ‘I took trans people seriously, as the people they were, but it was never an option for me’, she explained. Being able to see herself represented shifted her prior, false notion of trans people to recognising them as ‘human beings’. This highlights how a serious lack of knowledge can lead to false assumptions about the trans community. Education is the first step in humanising us.

“The cultural imprint in my head was that trans people were not something you should desire to be because it is bad. But this changed as I started to see more trans people online”.

While Denmark is one of the more progressive countries in Europe regarding trans healthcare, Ada rightfully criticised the long waiting lists trans people have to endure before being able to access gender-affirming healthcare.

Ada Ada Ada’s passion for art

After coming out to her family and friends and quitting her job, Ada pursued her passion: making art. She uses her personal experiences in her art, documenting her transition online. It is very common for trans people to take pictures of their transition, and Ada decided to turn this into a ‘trans-activistic’ project.

Through her documentation, she sought to educate cis people who are unaware of what being trans is actually like and what that process can look like. However, what she enjoyed most was the feedback from other trans people. Whether the outreach was through comments or messages, interacting with her own community always brings her a lot of joy.

Ada is a hybrid and digital artist using computer programming as her main tool, and her work has since been well received. When appropriate, she uses humour in her art, taking a more joyful approach to showcasing her trans identity. Ada describes this approach as ‘intersectional eco-feminist’, working with racism, gender, climate change, and other social inequalities.

Advice for future trans content creators

The advice Ada would give to other trans people who wish to document their transition on social media, is to ‘not overdo it .. try to make a good experience out of it … find the right way to do it … and have fun with it’. To read more about Ada’s documentation and to keep track of the progress of her transition, visit her Instagram and website. All her other projects can also be found on her website.

This interview is part of a monthly series titled Showcasing Our Community: Trans Creators Making a Difference, where we spotlight trans content creators and share their experiences with the wider community. The intention is to share and celebrate the work of trans individuals with GenderGP’s community and to spread some positivity and light through the world.

We thank Ada Ada Ada for being so open and sharing her story with us. If you are a trans content creator of any sort, such as an activist, artist or TikToker, and this interview inspired you to share your own journey, then make sure to contact us via: blog@gendergp.com. We look forward to sharing who you are with our community.