@lilmiquela wears Chanel, Prada and Supreme, works with fashion magazines and advocates for social change. Does it matter that she is a virtual avatar?
Miquela Sousa, better known by her Instagram handle @lilmiquela, appears to be your run-of-the-mill influencer. The 19-year-old, Los Angeles-based, Brazilian/Spanish model and musician fills her Instagram feed with an endless stream of “outfit-of-the-day” shots, featuring Chanel, Proenza Schouler, Supreme, Vetements and Vans. She shares pictures of herself attending events like ComplexCon with fellow influencers and celebrity friends, along with memes and inspirational quotes. She even uses her platform to support social causes including Black Lives Matter and transgender rights. Her Instagram followers, which currently number over 535,000, are dubbed “Miquelites.” Her debut single “Not Mine” reached number eight on Spotify Viral in August 2017. There’s only one thing — she’s not real, or at least not what we used to call real.
Miquela is computer-generated — and refuses to reveal who is actually behind her meticulously curated, yet clearly artificial persona. “I’d like to be described as an artist or a singer or something that denotes my craft rather than focus on the superficial qualities of who I am,” Sousa tells BoF over chat.
Miquela Sousa, better known as Lil Miquela or simply, Lil Miquelaç is a Brazilian American computer generated model and influencer and music artist from Downey, California. Her Instagram account, lilmiquela was activated in 2016, she has amassed more than 526,000 followers and a cult-like following of ‘Miquelites’. She has gained attention most notably for controversy regarding whether or not she is a real person or a virtual simulation.
“I’d like to be described as an artist or a singer or something that denotes my craft…”
Although her responses and actions are all computer generated, Sousa refuses to be looked at any other way than as an individual. “I’d like to be described as an artist or a singer or something that denotes my craft rather than focus on the superficial qualities of who I am,” Sousa told BoF in their recent interview.