Tag Archives: hip hop

Notes From the 6 Train: AfroPunking at FIT

screen-shot-2013-05-23-at-2-13-14-pm ( few snapshots from last year’s Afropunk music festival)

Now that the end of black history has happened, I silently weep. Okay, a bit dramatic, but, I am genuinely sad. All the super cool lectures and forums will be coming to an abrupt ending. I can’t complain too much, I went to several amazing programs. Just this past Tuesday, FIT collaborated with FIT’s Office of Educational Programs and Afropunk to put on “AFROPUNK Pictures presents THE TRIPTYCH.” If you aren’t already familiar with Afropunk, I shall shed a bit of light. Afropunk is “touchstone of a cultural movement strongly reminiscent of the early days of Hip-Hop,” and every year they hold an awesome (and free) music festival in Fort Greene. I went to this past August and I had a blast and a half. The energy of the whole weekend was electric, everyone seemed at peace. That is what Afrpunk excels at, creating a community of weird, nurturing and celebrating this weirdness. The festival brings punk and hip hop underground artists to the light, and had several well-known names,( if you’re well versed hip hop at least). I got to see Big Frida, the bounce queen from New Orleans, Theopilus London, Danny Brown, Dead Prez & ?uestlove from The Roots dj’d the most sonically pleasing set ever ( and I go to lots of concerts.) In addition to the festival, Afropunk also curates a blog that helps showcase on up and coming black talented artists/ musicians/ writers. ( Not to mention the fashion is insaneeee.)

1979246_10151981835981623_2093856699_o (Khalid, an Afropunk staff member, Joyce, Wangechi, Michaela Angela Davis, and FIT alum that helped organize the event)

Imagine trying to fit all this creative energy and innovating spirit into an hour presentation, because that’s exactly what the Afropunk film did. They highlighted three astounding visual artists, Sanford Biggers, Wangichi Mutu ( who I mentioned in other post about the Brooklyn Museum & Studio Museum) and Barron Clairborne. What was best about the documentary was that each artist’s segment was a work of art in itself. As opposed to boring Q & A sessions, they took us on a journey through their lives, studios, and imagination. Wangechi Mutu and Jocelyn Cooper, co-producer of Triptych and the co-founder of Afropunk, were panel guests, while the panel was mediated by activist Michaela Angela Davis, who focuses on the intimately intertwined topics of urban style, race, gender and hip-hop culture in the United States. Not to mention she has worked at VIBE and Essence, styled for Oprah, Beyonce, countless other celebrities and is currently serves on the board for several non-profits stylishly creating change throughout the community.

It’s always such a treat to be able to interact with the movers shakers in the art/ fashion/ music world. The artists and the panel members all made their own reality, through collage, paint, glue and a vision. This is such an important narrative for most of the FIT student body because we are all dreamers in some capacity. Going to such a competitive school, and entering such a competitive field can be daunting. That’s why for me, to see other people excelling and loving their work, relights that fire in me. Do whatever it takes, going to shows and museums or a really cool Afropunk festival to keep your fire lit.

All things Color, Love & Fashion,

Ayanna L.

Here’s the link to see snippets from Triptych: http://www.afropunk.com/profiles/blogs/afro-punk-pictures-presents-the-triptych