Latvia-born singer and model Viktoria Modesta released her first music video last week on Channel 4, in which she proudly struts a series of beautiful prosthetic legs. Now, after having her story covered by prominent publications like Elle, People, and the Guardian, she's not only the first widely-known leg amputee pop star, but also a true inspiration to all those with physical disabilities.
According to her website, she was born with a dislocated left hip and leg. At age 20, after 15 ineffective surgeries in Latvia, she made the radical decision to move to London to undergo a below-the-knee amputation.
Modesta challenges our preconceptions of what a pop artist should be. Instead of treating her amputeeism as a disability, she allows it to empower her. In the music video for her song "Prototype," her prosthetic leg steals the show. It's a sleek metal spike that taps and scrapes thrillingly along a glass floor. It's a bejeweled weapon she uses to shoot lasers at the video's villain. It's a glowing light source your eyes are drawn to as she dances.
She's not demanding sympathy. She's commanding attention. "Prototype" questions accepted ideas of sex and beauty. And despite having had doors closed on her because of her amputeeism, she shows no bitterness. It's really a celebration of what makes her different.
You can watch the video for "Prototype" below: