Sensitivity Editor, Performer & Writer, The Great Tit is a Bird

Franceska Njanja

Franceska Njanja (they / them pronouns) is a Nairobi-based Kenyan artist, writer, health educator, and activist who believes that art has real potential to effect changes in society. Franceska’s work has been included in recent significant exhibitions: Amsterdam International AIDS Conference (2018); UHAI EASHRI Changing Faces Conference (2019); UN-Habitat Assembly (2019); Artfluencefest @ KwaZulu-Natal University (2021) and African Podcast Festival (2022). Franceska is a lead vocal performer and sensitivity editor for “The Great Tit is a Bird,” and they recently joined the project as a writer as well. 

As a self-trained drag-performing “Artivist,” Franceska is a writer and podcaster in Nairobi’s queer collective underground ballroom community. They are an ardent advocate for their community in Kenya, where consensual same-sex intimacy is criminalized and LGBTQGNC+ people are often seen as mentally ill, immoral, or un-African. As a conversion therapy survivor who has been outed without consent, Franceska regularly speaks out on how homophobic and transphobic laws endanger the lives and wellbeing of the LGBTQGNC+ community. Ballroom and ball/house culture, depicted on shows such as FX’s “Pose,” have helped them undertake a process of identity making and remaking against pervasive notions of identity that are fixed and permanent in the broader society.