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Into the pink

Memelord David Leatherwood pays a visit to ‘canceled’ ballerina Ariana Dewing’s Barbie Dream Camper.

David Leatherwood // Ariana Dewing

By David Leatherwood

When I first met Ariana Dewing at Turning Point USA’s Student Action Summit in 2020, I was intrigued. Pink hair. Pink eyebrows. Pink lipstick. She looks like she just walked off the pages of Vogue– probably because she actually is a Vogue model. Who is this Barbie dream, and what is she doing at a conservative political convention, I thought. 

It’s easy to assume Dewing is a flaming Leftist, at first glance, judging by her edgy fashion and colorful palette. I thought so, and was horribly wrong. 

Turns out, she’s a ballerina, one with a fervent enthusiasm for the color pink.  And she’s anything but a hive mind conformist.

Little did I know at the time, Dewing had been so outspoken about her political beliefs that she got cancelled by her dance troupe and lost her job as a professional ballerina. Now, she travels the country with her husband Eric in their “Barbie RV” and teaches ballet lessons to students across the country.

As someone who has also been canceled for being outspoken, I instantly connected with Dewing’s story. It’s the same story shared by countless Americans in 2021: being cancelled for not fitting the political mold. 

Aside from her extreme bravery to unapologetically speak out in the face of so much adversity, I soon discovered Ariana’s passion for the arts is tantamount to her stylistic uniqueness in conservative political circles. 

“My hope is to show those who love this country that pursuing a career in the arts does not have to mean compromising your conservative values, or being in fear of being cancelled before your career even starts,” Dewing said to me. 

The culture war rages on in our country and creatives like Dewing fight an uphill battle for more diversity in the arts. As a professional ballet dancer, photographer, and Vogue model cancelled by her peers, Ariana now aspires to build a community of free-thinking artists who don’t necessarily fit the brainwashed archetype of Hollywood, or the Upper West Side.

“The next generation needs to understand the importance of standing up for what is right while continuing to share their art with the world,” she says. 

When Dewing invited me to the infamous Barbie RV for a photoshoot, I did not hesitate. Since my wardrobe was severely lacking anything pink, she took me thrifting. We found the most perfect pink pants to match a Lil Nas X-inspired pink cowboy hat. Since my online moniker is Brokeback Patriot, it was perfectly apt. The theme: Cowboy Ken Doll, obviously.

When I arrived, the Barbie RV was parked at the beach on a perfect Florida day, and when I stepped inside I was instantly transported into a pink fantasy.

Every single detail in the Barbie RV dreamhouse is pink. Pink couches, pink pillows, pink rugs, pink mugs. I had never been surrounded by so much pink in my life. And when I put on my pink outfit, I have to admit, I felt completely awash in an overwhelming sensation of warmth and peace and calm. Who knew being covered in pink would feel so good?

“Living in a pink world, it really is hard to have a bad mood,” Dewing remarks. 

Dewing then grabbed her camera and started directing the shoot. I felt like I was in the hands of a truly multidimensional artist, making it all appear so effortless. And, if I may say so, she made me look and feel like a supermodel, which is no easy feat.

All photos by Ariana Dewing

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