For those who aren’t aware of Afropunk here’s a little background information and I’ve included a link if you want to check it out for yourself.
“Afro: as in, born of African spirit and heritage; see also black (not always), see also rhythm and color, see also other, see also the underdog.
Punk: as in, rebel, opposing the simple route, imbued with a DIY ethic, looking forward with simplicity, rawness and open curiosity; see also other, see also the underdog.
AFROPUNK is defining culture by the collective creative actions of the individual and the group. It is a safe place, a blank space to freak out in, to construct a new reality, to live your life as you see fit while making sense of the world around you.” AfroPunk. 2018 (http://afropunkfest.com/brooklyn/)
I’ve known of Afropunk since 2017. I didn’t know much about the festival, but I had heard about it being similar to Coachella but black.
Fast forward to 2018, I had learned a little more about it. So, with these things in mind, I went ahead and purchased a ticket for 87.00. It was a great price compared to what they charge for tickets at other festivals.
My friends and I were excited to go because this would be our first time attending something like this. We all live in Pennsylvania, so we chose to drive from PA to NJ and use public transportation. Now looking back, that was a bad decision. I grew up in Jersey, but I was unable to navigate through the city because I’m so used to driving. Thankfully everyone we had encountered was very helpful to us.
So, on public transportation from NJ to Brooklyn NY, it took us almost two hours to get there. We arrive at Afropunk at 12:30 and the line is already a little long. We finally make it inside which only took about 10-15 minutes of standing in line. There was not a lot of people inside at first because it started at 12 noon and we arrived 30 minutes after it opened.
Going into the festival, we saw lots of booths with an array of different information. I only stopped at five booths. The one I enjoyed the most was the mental health booth. They asked us to paint how we felt in the moment. They were going to take the paintings to their facility and put on the wall to help people who are battling with mental health. The reason it touched me is, the way they were using art to help others. Art is so expressive and the if you allow yourself to see and understand what that person was feeling in that moment of creativity and can soothe you in a way. I love the way emotions can be relayed to other people through different types of art.
Onto food and beverage, now before I got there I was so excited about the food trucks and the beverages, but I only ended up eating at two places. I should be more prepared and realized where I was… In Brooklyn NY where things are bound to be expensive as hell. The food that I did try was pretty good. I ate Café Habana which was recommended by my friend Kadeem. He hyped it up and to my surprise it was delicious! I also tried Caribbean king food truck, they gave you big sized portion and the food was so delectable!
There’s not much to say about the drinks, because they weren’t really popping, and I only had wine because the mixed drinks were watered down from what Kadeem told me.
Overall it was an okay experience. I really didn’t like standing all day and I didn’t prepare because I did not wear comfortable shoes. I really enjoyed the creativity of the outfits and the openness of the crowd. It helped me to appreciate what natural bodies looked like because we are so bombarded with these fake images of what beauty is. I saw stretch marks and cellulite and I have both, so it was nice to see people so comfortable in their own skin. I will post a video of Miguel singing and videos of us throughout the day. Thanks for reading!