Seapunk

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Not to be confused with Surf punk.

Seapunk is a subculture that originated on Tumblr in 2011. The seapunk subculture is often associated with an aquatic-themed style of fashion, 3D net art iconography, and 1990s pop culture allusions. The advent of the seapunk subculture also spawned its own electronic dance music subgenre, featuring elements of Southern hip hop and 1990s pop and R&B. The seapunk subculture gained limited popularity as it spread across the internet, although it developed a Chicago club scene.[1]

History[edit]

Originally, seapunk started out as a trend and meme on the website Tumblr in 2011. The term "seapunk" was coined by DJ Lil Internet in 2011, who had first wrote about it on Twitter.[2]

In a 2011 article, Cluster Mag reported the emergence of seapunk in electronic media. Seapunk was described as, by the aforementioned website, "a mostly internet-based phenomenon, birthed out of the Tumblr and Twitter universes as a means to describe a lifestyle aesthetic that is all things oceanic and of the sea."[3]

Seapunk music[edit]

Miles Raymer of the Chicago Reader described seapunk music as "style of music that incorporates bits of 90s house, the past 15 years or so of pop and R&B, and the latest in southern trap rap—all overlaid with a twinkly, narcotic energy that recalls new-age music and chopped and screwed hip-hop mix tapes in roughly equal measure."[1] According to The New York Times, the music associated with seapunk "constitutes a tiny music subgenre" that has elements of witch house, chiptune, drum and bass and southern rap. The New York Times also noted that some seapunk tracks "remix songs from R&B acts like Beyoncé and Aaliyah".[2]

In January 2012, an international article published about seapunk music was featured in Dazed & Confused magazine. Katia Ganfield interviewed Albert Redwine (a.k.a. Ultrademon) in the article, "Seapunk: A new club scene intent on riding sub-bass sound waves into the future".[4]

Notable seapunk artists include Azealia Banks, Grimes, Ultrademon, Blank Banshee, Isaiah Toothtaker, Fire For Effect, Zombelle, Slava, Unicorn Kid, and Splash Club 7.[5][6]

Fashion imagery[edit]

Artist Tess Aquarium in a typical seapunk styling

Seapunks often wear bright green, blue, turquoise, cyan or aquamarine clothing,[7] featuring nautical themes such as mermaids or dolphins, plastic Ray Ban wayfarers, shell jewelry, feathers, tartan overshirts associated with the surfer subculture, baseball caps, tie dye, transparent plastic jackets,[8] and skipper caps.[9] Symbols such as yin-yangs, smiley faces and references to the 1990s are also a part of the style.[10]

Hair and makeup[edit]

Seapunks often dye their hair, and sometimes facial hair, with varying shades of turquoise, lilac, and sea blue.[11] The seapunk styling was appropriated by several mainstream popular music and hip hop artists during the 2010s, most notably Kreayshawn, Nicki Minaj, Soulja Boy, Taylor Swift, Katy Perry, Lady Gaga, Azealia Banks, Rihanna, and Frank Ocean.[12]

Seapunk digital imagery and use of social networking media[edit]

Images featuring neon flashing colors and rotating geometric shapes floating above oceans of brilliant blue or green water flood the pages tagged with a #Seapunk hashtag on Tumblr. Seapunk digital imagery draws largely from 1990s 3D net art. The aforementioned imagery has given rise to other internet-based subgenres consisting of similar themes, such as slimepunk and icepunk.[2]

Rapper Azealia Banks used seapunk imagery in her "Atlantis" music video in 2012.[10] Singer Rihanna was influenced by seapunk in her "Diamonds" performance on Saturday Night Live in 2012.[10][13]

Elements of seapunk imagery were claimed to have influenced designers such as Versace and Cartiergod's "Ocean Gang".[14]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Raymer, Miles (12 January 2012). "The Week Seapunk Broke". Chicago Reader (Sun-Times Media, LLC). Retrieved 13 April 2012. 
  2. ^ a b c Detrick, Ben (2 March 2012). "Little Mermaid Goes Punk: Seapunk, a Web Joke With Music, Has Its Moment". The New York Times. Retrieved 12 February 2014. 
  3. ^ Stephens, Alexis. "The Abyss: #seapunk #splishsplash #oceangang". Cluster Mag. Retrieved 12 February 2014. 
  4. ^ Ganfield, Katia (January 2012). "Seapunk: A new club scene intent on riding sub-bass sound waves into the future". Dazed & Confused. pp. 26–270. 
  5. ^ "Lana Del Rey + Grimes". Time Out. Time Out Digital Ltd. Retrieved July 15, 2016. 
  6. ^ Stehlik, Lucy (14 December 2012). "Seapunk: Scenester in-joke or underground art movement?". The Guardian. Retrieved 12 February 2014. 
  7. ^ 2010s subcultures
  8. ^ The Abyss
  9. ^ Seapunks salty over Rihanna
  10. ^ a b c Martins, Chris (14 November 2012). "Seapunks Salty Over Rihanna and Azealia Banks' 'Net Aesthetics". Spin Magazine. Retrieved 12 February 2014. 
  11. ^ Next big trend
  12. ^ Muller, Marissa G. (August 7, 2014). "Frank Ocean Is Basically A Merman". MTV. Retrieved July 14, 2016. 
  13. ^ Harwood, Nick (30 November 2012). "You Never Thought Seapunk Would Take It This Far". Respect. Retrieved 12 February 2014. 
  14. ^ Sidell, Misty White (30 November 2012). "Seapunks Internet Trend Takes High Fashion, from Proenza Schouler to Versace". The Daily Beast. Retrieved 12 February 2014.