The #MuseumOfMissy Deserved More
There have been many female rap artists, but the women who have stood the test of time since rap became a popular music genre in the late ‘80s are few and far between. Spearheading that shortlist is the godmother of b-boy clothing style, finger-wave Black girl hair magic, and an artistic wonderland that only a mastermind can bring to life in jaw-dropping visuals. As you know by now, this year’s MTV’s Video Music Awards, Video Vanguard Award went to none other than the Missy “Misdemeanour” Elliot.
The “Video Vanguard Award”, is the MTV’s VMAs version of a “Lifetime Achievement Award”, except to specifically honor artists that have created exceptional, culture-shifting moments and visuals in their music videos. This year marks the first time, a female rapper will receive the honor. Even if you aren’t a “hip hop historian”, Elliot’s influence and style is not unique to rap videos but has transcended all genres, by which artists have consistently had coordinated outfits and dance routines including men, women and even children dancers.
Although, before her return during Katy Perry’s 2015 Super Bowl Halftime show, Missy’s talents were overlooked, partly due to her time away from the public eye, it was up to social media to remind newer generations and anyone who had forgotten to pay homage to the artistry the godmother has shared with us.
This year alone, Misdemeanor has become the first female rapper to be inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame and receive an honorary degree from the Berklee School of Music. Missy attributes these new honors to her fans, specifically Kid Fury and Crissle, from The Read Podcast who campaigned for MTV to consider Ms. Supa Dupa Fly.
As a 41 time MTV Video Music Awards nomine and 7-time recipient, MTV went above and beyond to honor this lifetime achievement, as they should, MTV decided to showcase her work in an interactive pop-up “Museum of Missy Elliot” in New York this past weekend, to which I had the pleasure of attending…
The pop-up #MuseumOfMissy honored over a decade of Missy’s work and the creative and video directors that played a part in executing the queen’s vision.
Have you ever attended an event, whereby the overall feel seems to be one curated by Black women, only to come to the sad realization that someone dropped the ball and it wasn’t actually created by us?
Now, don’t get me wrong I enjoyed the pop-up because it was free and filled with attendees who I knew respected Missy’s musicality but these realities don’t quite overshadow the whispers of “those aren’t even all her album covers” and “they could have done a little more with that sand body set-up”.
What I Did Enjoy?
The nail art stop where technicians were applying jewels and stick on nails inspired by Elliot’s dope nail art, along with vanity mirrors set up so Missy Fans could apply jewels and face art to their faces under a sign that said “werk it”, which was fitting.
Holding a real-life MTV moon-man in my hand and reciting my rehearsed-in-the-shower award acceptance * S P E E C H* … “First of all, I’d like to thank my connect, the most important person with all due respect!”
Finally, the only stop within the entire “interactive museum” that had a line-up, the “The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly)”, black blow-up sumo wrestler suit virtual reality booth.
More Black women are needed in these spaces to make sure moments to honor our heroes are done correctly! This is sort of the, “we need to support our own” mantra because there is no way a Black publication would have dropped the ball on a Missy tribute photo-opt situation. The possibilities were truly endless. Where were the hanging chandlers, and beep, beep prop Jeeps, cornfields and mummies?!
Yet, I got this…
(I’m smiling to keep from crying and not because I’m particularly impressed or amused)
In my humble opinion, the pop-up museum just wasn’t it, but Missy did not fail to show us why she deserves all the accolades she’s received this year and many more. THIS IS MISSY ELLIOT:
Congrats go out to Missy in this full-circle moment and truly giving her fans a show because we all know Missy be puttin’ down.
Where were Timbo and Ciara? At least we got Alyson Stoner!