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Basel Thots: Confessions of an Art Basel Party Girl (Part One)

In between drinking free champagne and running into former flings, I turned up with FKA Twigs, Future Brown, Kelela, and Clams Casino.
December 5, 2014, 10:56pm

This week, Miami is hosting an international affair of modern and contemporary art called Art Basel—which everyone knows are just code words for the last great turn-up of the year. Scouting the scene last night, I partied with Future Brown, Kelela, FKA Twigs, Clams Casino and Les Sins… plus a random assortment of VFiles models, ex-flings, and art kids from Brooklyn. Follow me over the next three nights as I avoid looking at art and linger at all the best Basel parties.

5:13PM - The Sandro x LVRN Maison des Ballons Pop-Up

An Uber covered in really bad graffiti picks me up to go to a pop-up party… inside a mall. Half an hour later, I'm in a store called Sandro drinking champagne. MeLo-X—who plays reggae every Thursday at New York's Webster Hall and has apparently worked with Beyoncé—is DJing for a group of about 15 people. Two of whom are Raury's managers. Emily, the girl in charge, keeps apologizing for how far the event is from Miami's main drag. But I'm not mad. I'm going to Claire's and Hot Topic after the free bubbly.

10:03PM - Future Brown and Kelela at Perez Museum

I catch a ride in Raury's manager's van to Future Brown (Fatima Al Qadiri, Nguzunguzu, J-Cush) and Kelela's show at Perez Museum. The entire Brooklyn party scene is here—Dev Hynes, Ryder Ripps, Rezzie, Brian Whatever. Flames go off when Kelela finishes her performance. My eyebrows feel like they burned off for a second, and my hair gets caught in Charles' (Future Brown's manager) glasses. I run away. but run into an artist that I slept with once. He introduced me to his Basel boo, a thin ginger. Whatever. At least there's an open bar here—and a Red Bull vodka open bar is my type of open bar.

Walking around, I say hi to Lafawndah who's looking QT. Oh, and I spot PC Music's Drink QT. Walking down the stairs towards the water, I almost fall on Dein and Kelela. J-Cush starts Future Brown's set with their new song "Talkin Bandz." But I'm distracted. There's a water sport installation happening nearby, with VFiles models skating on water. I wish I was kidding.

11:15PM - FKA Twigs and Clams Casino at the National YoungArts Foundation

I'm backstage staring at Twigs' back because, I don't know, I'm diva drunk. She's wearing a gold sequin suit—does this mean sequins are back?—and her set is getting emotional. The artist lounge has fruit platters and a ring pop station, sick. Robert Pattinson just walked passed me as I'm chewing on a celery stick. I wanted to get a selfie with his shaved head but he has a hat on. Actually, I want a lot of things from Robert. We're the same height I think.

While waiting for the address for Twigs' afterparty, which is apparently in someone's mansion, I keep chilling in the artist lounge where the music is killing it. It sounds like a Joseph Marinetti mix. Just kidding, it's definitely Marinetti—I made the playlist for this place. Dev Hynes and his girlfriend Samantha walk by again. I wave hi. How many times can I go to the same party with someone and be like, "Hi bb, we don't know each other on a first and last name basis, but maybe we can hug this time?"

1:27AM - FKA Twigs Afterparty at Le Pompon  

Fancy, very fancy. I'm in a mansion on Palm Avenue. A chef is making gourmet snacks, and all the mini bar stations ran out of cups, so the staff is just feeding everyone's thirst with leftover bottles of liquor. Clams Casino's manager Ben passes me a bottle of tequila. I do a shot, then take a selfie with Drink QT. I introduce her to Alex Chapman and Gitoo. Robert Pattinson changed into a tuxedo (yum) and FKA Twigs is in a denim onesie. Everyone's gathered in the yard watching female dancers before Skepta goes on. I'm just in the back doing more shots.

2:27AM - Les Sins at Bardot

I'm too turnt to think at this point.

Briana Cheng is THUMP's Art-Basel-party-girl-at-large - @banacrisp