Wonderland.

AFROPUNK BROOKLYN

15 party-goers on NYC’s favourite festival.

On the last weekend of August, thousands gathered on the humid streets of Brooklyn for AFROPUNK Fest, a vibrant celebration of African culture, rebellious spirit and a DIY ethic. Spotlighting the best local arts, food and culture in Brooklyn, the eclectic music lineup ranged from ultimate Queen Erykah Badu to smooth crooner Miguel, R&B bae Daniel Caesar to rap legend Denzel Curry.

We caught up with 15 party-goers on creativity, music the spirit of the festival.

Name: Storm

Age: 24

IG: @alex.is.storm

Occupation: Registered behavioral technician.

Place of birth: Birmingham, Alabama.

Where do you live at the moment? The Bronx, NY.

What does AFROPUNK mean to you?
It’s a safe space for me to gather with other liberal creatives to celebrate, and honor the importance of expressing individuality and taking risks in fashion and, more importantly, throughout life.

What’s the last creative thing you’ve done?
I created both outfits that I wore to Afropunk this year. I am also an active freelance model and recently did some work for DC shoes.

Last song you played?
Feeling Good by Nina Simone.

Name: Allison

Age: 35

IG: @al_rachelle

Occupation: Neonatal occupational therapist.

Place of birth: Dayton, Ohio.

Where do you live at the moment? Dayton.

What does AFROPUNK mean to you?
Afropunk is an experience like no other. A black experience that allows you to feel the music embrace the culture and enjoy a cultural movement of arts and fashion like no other.

What’s the last song you played today?
It was yoga meditation 365. It helps me ease my mind before going to bed.

Name: Noah Jean-Michel Domond

Age: 21

IG: @noahdomond

Occupation: Model / Student.

Place of birth: New York City.

Where do you do live at the moment? Harlem, New York.

What does AFROPUNK mean to you?
To me, Afropunk means unity and togetherness, a safe environment for everyone to get along and be themselves.

What’s the last creative thing you’ve done?
I draw a lot, made a painting using caulk.

Last song you played today?
Nightmares! by Bleach Valentine on Soundcloud.

Name: Bella Sontez

Age: I’m 20 something.

IG: @bellasontez

Occupation: I’m a model and actress.

Place of origin: Born in Kent, UK.

Where do you live at the moment: I live in London.

What does AFROPUNK mean to you?
Afropunk to me means freedom, unity and individuality.

What’s the last creative thing you’ve done?
That’s a tough one; I’m forever creating just by being, so it’s hard to pinpoint something.

Last song you played today?
People make the world go round by The Pharaohs.

Name: Anthony Ladson

Age: 27

IG: @ailadson

Occupation: Just floating in life.

Place of origin: Chicago, IL.

Where do you live at the moment? Boston, MA.

What does AFROPUNK mean to you?
The same thing that everything means: the present moment, pure gnosis, all that jazz.

What’s the last creative thing you’ve done?
Had a cuddle session with my cat and wrote some computer code.

Last song you played today?
Cam’Ron by Hey Ma.

Name: Kiara Simmons

Age: 20

IG: @_mohnsta

Occupation: Model.

Place of birth: New York.

Where do you live at the moment: New York.

What does AFROPUNK mean to you?
Afro Punk is a safe space for black artists to express their creativity and individuality. To network with each other and support one another while being able to discover new artists and witness some legends they probably would’ve never seen before.

What’s the last creative thing you’ve done?
Sewing my outfit for Afropunk Brooklyn.

Last song you played today?
Where the Bag At by City Girls.

Name: The Underd0g

Age: 100000000

IG: @the_underd0g

Occupation: Recording Artist.

Place of birth: The Bronx, NY.

Where do you live at the moment? New York.

What does AFROPUNK mean to you?
It’s a place that people of all different cultures can come to together to celebrate individuality. You can actually be yourself without being judged, no matter how weird you are. Oh yeah and the food is fire!

What’s the last creative thing you’ve done?
I balanced a water bottle on my head for 15 seconds.

Last song you played today?
Maneater by Nelly Furtado.

Name: Yasmeen Wilkerson, a.k.a Yaz

Age: 21

IG: @yaz.so.mean

Occupation: Catering.

Place of birth: Bed Stuy, Brooklyn.

Where do you live at the moment? Still in Brooklyn.

What does AFROPUNK mean to you?
Afropunk means speaking truth to power. It means freedom for the underprivileged, over judged and hard working. It means love between all shades of our black culture.

What’s the last creative thing you’ve done?
I play the clarinet. On my Instagram, I make skateboarding edits. I used to play clarinet all throughout grade school and fell off when I got into high school. But got right back on as a way of therapy and ease of mind. Now when I have the time, I combine my skateboarding edits with my clarinet playing. Which has been super creative and fun for me!

Last song you played today?
Probably Everybody Loves the Sunshine by Roy Ayers.

Name: Zahara

Age: 7

My mum’s IG: @sunrara

Place of birth: New York.

Where do you live at the moment? Bed Stuy, Brooklyn.

What does AFROPUNK mean to you?
Fun. I like seeing people who like to be their selves.

What’s the last creative thing you’ve done?
Chokers made out of rubber bands.

Last song you played today?
In My Feelings by Drake.

Name: Dev Im

Age: 27

IG: @devskeerocket

Occupation: Model / naturalhair influencer & videographer.

Place of birth: Born and raised in Camden, NJ.

Where do you live at the moment? Still in Camden (NJ). Philadelphia is close by that’s where I got my start as an artist.

What’s the last creative thing you’ve done?
It was to finish a script for a short film.

Last song you have played on your phone today?
Dreamy by J.Dilla.

(LEFT)

Name: Dina Baez

Age: 24

IG: @dinafairycake

Occupation: Artist / Painter.

Place of birth: Brooklyn.

Where do you live at the moment? Philadelphia.

What does AFROPUNK mean to you?
Afropunk to me is a safe space for Afrocentric people to celebrate their individuality and solidarity for equality!

What’s the last creative thing you’ve done?
I think it was my outfit for Afropunk… hahaha!

Last song you played today?
Whack World by Tierra Whack!

(RIGHT)

Name: Kingsley Ibeneche

Age: 27

IG: @kingsleyibeneche

Occupation: Performing artist.

Place of birth: Camden, NJ.

Where do you live at the moment? Camden, NJ.

What does AFROPUNK mean to you?
A big space to dance.

What’s the last creative thing you’ve done?
I choreographed movement for my original music.

Last song you played today?
Instant Karma by John Lennon.

Name: Abdul-Qadir Islam

Age: 31

IG: @aqueye

Occupation: Doctoral Student at Teachers College, Columbia University.

Place of birth: Philadelphia, PA.

Where do you live at the moment? New York City.

What does AFROPUNK mean to you?
It’s an affirming place to explore my blackness in a space that’s both supportive and affirming. I like to think that my inner light shines brighter when I leave Afro Punk and that’s how I start my academic year on the right foot.

What’s the last creative thing you’ve done?
Writing poetry about mothers and their sons.

Last song you played today?
February 3rd by Jorja Smith.

Name: Allison Smith

Age: 25

IG: @allyboozay

Occupation: Saleswoman by day, audio engineer & DJ by night.

Place of birth: Greenville, SC.

Where do you live at the moment? Still in Greenville, SC.

What does AFROPUNK mean to you?
Afropunk means a lot to me, but mainly self-expression. With no fear or judgment. I come from a place where it’s weird for a black person to not dress as society would expect, or listen to the type of music they expect. Afropunk is about being your purest form of self, around so many like-minded beings. I love it!

What’s the last creative thing you’ve done?
I put together my outfits for my trip to NY for Afropunk lol

Last song you played today?
Moo by Doja Cat.

Name: Summer

Age: 40

IG: @bklyncoal

Occupation: I’m a chef.

Place of birth: Brooklyn, NY.

Where do you live at the moment? Still Brooklyn.

What does AFROPUNK mean to you?
Afropunk as a concept is about interrupting social constructs, especially those that are placed on black and brown folks. It’s individual freedom and honest expression, layered with so much beautiful complexity.

What’s the last creative thing you’ve done?
It was to prepare an incredible dinner for the person I love most in this world.

Last song you played today?
Maggot Brain by Funkadelic.

Photography
AFROPUNK BROOKLYN

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