Ushering in the new work week slowly dragging our feet toward our desks because they still hurt from stomping on the pavement at the No Commission art show this weekend, we're reminded that this is possibly the worst case of "The Mondays" to date. The fun all began this past Thursday amid a heatwave, but luckily for many of us work doesn't let out til around 5 p.m., so most of us arrived after sundown. As a Bronx native I've always had to travel to get to the fun events in town, which typically involves Brooklyn. Being that Brooklyn is so spacious and with numerous lot spaces, this is the best place to host any event, especially for large crowds.
The New York "Scene" has always embraced all different types of people but each event has its key players that determine whether you should attend. Now sometimes this isn't the best measure of a party's success, but it's a good sign that things are lit. The Swizz Beatz-hosted No Commission didn't need that cosign because it is seldom that people will travel all this way for anything short of a good time. Soon as you step off the 6 train at 3 Avenue, 138th street you may be a little underwhelmed by the desolate space between the train and the festivities. This only lasts a moment as you get near the blaring sounds from the speakers knocking on center stage and the abundance of beautiful people racing to the entrance to catch the performances because it was certainly too hot in New York to stand in the sun.
After dealing with the typical door politics you're welcomed with a free open bar all day and night, a massive ferris wheel and probably your favorite rapper entering the doors of the art show. The event had all of the elements of an art show in Chelsea ( liquor, chaser, art) and a day party in Brooklyn (open lot, food trucks, fire performances), but the special part is this was to celebrate the Bronx. On opening night Swizz mentioned all of the reasons this event was particularly special.
- Thursday, August 11 is the birthdate of hip-hop in the Bronx.
Not sure how accurate this is because identifying the exact date the universe brought all the elements of hip-hop together seems far-fetched. However we trust Swizz's expertise as he made sure to invite all of the legends like Doug E Fresh and Melle Mel to enjoy the evening with everyone.
- Every artist on display received 100% of their profits.
The name of this event is only clever because they meant exactly what they said. At the No Commission Art Show they lived by their name and collected no commission on the sale of the art displayed, and trust, we're pretty sure their were a few pieces they wished they had. Swizz spoke repeatedly, saying "Free the artist, free the people." The message could not have been more clear after this experience.
- No egos and great performances.
Given Swizz Beatz's extensive contact list he brought out nothing short of greatness to the main stage. They came to party, dance, look at art and perform for us and didn't stay behind the velvet ropes of the VIP. Swizz himself set the tone by joining the crowd to watch the performances.
Entertainers were both on stage and in the crowds, which made for very organic moments without ego. The likes of June Ambrose, Ebro, Pecas, Dee and Ricky, Young Thug, Fabolous, DMX and Jonathan Mannion posed with fans, engaged in dialogue about art and browsed the show. We'd like to mention also that even Chanel Iman and Asap Rocky came together — now the pair may have been there as friends, but one thing is for sure: Kendall wasn't around. This event inspired many people to create, to be proud of their culture and to work on uplifting others through their work. No Commission was for the artist by artists, and Swizz showed he understands the importance of celebrating the culture.
Catch our exclusive interview with Swizz Beatz, A$AP Rocky and other artists at the No Commission show below: