Afropunk 2016, what instagram doesn't show you

12:42 PM missusmonroe 0 Comments

photo by @danellsdamngram

If you don't know what Afropunk is, let me save your life once again. Although it is now global, this festival is home to the one and only BK. Black musical geniuses and artists come together in a weird Afrocentric, space galactical form and party-arty-arty two days long. It's also the mecca for festival fashion, yes you heard me right, Coachella does not compare. Photographers, vendors, magazine writers galore from all over make their way over to Commodore park to be apart of the madness and to capture its beauty. You're welcome for that blessing.

right photo by beauty of the black woman
roe. ebga orun choker, boohoo bathing suit top, thrifted silk pajama pants, chanel chain purse

So I know by now you've been up and down the afropunk hashtag and have oogled over the flower wigs, bright outfits, and cancer-free boobs but have you ever wondered if that's all to the punk of the afros? Have no fear, I'm here to tell you there is!


As a first-timer myself I thought all there was to it was what instagram showed. The glimmering sun, the multitude of food trucks, the beauty that is black... That's not entirely true. They don't show the stifling heat, the greater than stifling dust, the vast fields you can't walk through without busting a sweat. To be honest lol there's a lot that can't be included in IG actually.



So when we first arrived in NY we struggled through the traffic and had to endure unloading all of our vending equipment for what felt like days in the humid heat. See, if instagram does happen to shed light on the vendors, everything is essentially perfect and ready to sell. Where's the sweat, struggle, and more sweat that is behind the scenes? When you see the vending section it looks like it's always been there just sitting pretty and ready to go. I had to actually take a step back and recognize this myself. All the fanciness of some booths funny enough, didn't just miraculously appear one day. You don't see we don't get any food or even a cool cool beverage while setting up; we have to scavenge for ourselves to be honest(laughs out loud but not really)and just make everything work.



But in doing so, you do find amazing eats in the city. If you ever have a chance and you want to dip and dabble in vegan food, Toadstyle is a must. You literally must. So we go through those motions and this is only really in preparation. The day of you have to try and beat traffic from wherever your hotel/couch location is in order to make it to your tent early. And if you were like us, the boiling day before didn't allow for actual set up so you planned on throwing some things together the day of. Instagram doesn't show the bills thrown at the coordinators in order to vend but they only supply a lil measly tent and not even a helping hand. Not even a ride on their carts from your tent to the car to unload unless you happen to run into the right person like we did.



I realize this is making Afropunk sound no fun at all, lol which isn't the truth! It was actually a lot of fun, but it was my first event actually legitimately vending and it was a mighty big one to begin with. That being said, I don't know what instagram Afropunk is! I've never attended that one but thus far I attended the real deal and it's not all bright and shiny, I'll tell ya lol. Instagram also leaves out a few more things..


photo by @_yoshann

Insta may not show you all the hundreds of smiling faces regardless. Not all the support and encouraging words you may hear from other black faces and black businesses. Insta sure doesn't show the dirt kicked up in your face, but from the feet of festival goers dancing the celebrating the night away. Instagram shows the photographs but not the dozens and dozens of creatives being photographed (even though they may be choosy with your photos. **By the way, eeveryone comes for magazine/IG pics Sunday). 

All in all, the internet and apps always glamorize things. Here's your little guide to Afropunk 2017, be well prepared and well hydrated. And come very full. Don't get wrapped up in what your phone shows you but have an amazing time regardless of any disappointments! I know I did.

xxoo missusmonoroe



photo by slimstergraphy
courtesy of Buzzfeed's 22 Most stylish New Yorkers
roe. ebga orun choker, Pretty little things metal bralet, boohoo bathing suit bottoms, pretty little things mesh shorts



photo by @guerilah


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