It’s hard enough to twerk to the beat when you’re on level ground, let alone on a boat gliding along the rivers around Manhattan. Yet, that was the scene last night when the queer creatives of New York’s underground brought out their most major looks and set sail for the Anti-Prom.
Created by the Bronx-based crew of skaters and political activists known as BRUJAS, the annual party left the dock with one mission—to break down the patriarchal “Americana” traditions of Prom one beat at a time. To help break down the patriarchy for the event’s second year, BRUJAS teamed with sportswear designer Gypsy Sport to rock the boat—literally. There were more than a few moments where security scrambled to make sure that the crowd didn’t flip the ship while they got lit to a lineup of performers that included Gloss Gang, Yaeji, and queen Cardi B.
Long before the performers took to the DJ booth to wreak havoc on the crowd, though, we were busy gagging on the outfits that have made the Anti-Prom become known as the “Met-Gala of the Underground.”
Leaving norms of sexuality and gender at the dock, the boat was filled to the brim with the kind of subversive glam that Gypsy Sport and BRUJAS highlighted in their Anti-Prom shoot. Onboard, sequined bodysuits and artfully distressed fanny packs mixed with fishnets and enough camo print to outfit a military school.
When the sun set and the boat passed by Lady Liberty, lighters sparked up joints like fireflies and Manhattan’s skyline provided the perfect backdrop for the kids to dance their hearts out and spill their drinks to the beat. For one night, far away from the side-eyes and slurs that are still all too common in the city streets they traverse, the young creatives at the forefront of experimental fashion found their freedom.