Hello Friends, Much is being made of the essence of what an NFT is; or isn’t. Twitter is flush with posts casting doubts on the worth or the viability of the medium, many even going out of their way calling them a scam. Most of the cases being made are of the right-click-save nature; the notion that anyone can access the artwork/digital file and appropriate it. Which, by the way, it is 100% correct. But, is that where the real value lies? in the actual digital file? Or is it about re-defining value perception in the context of a new reality: the Metaverse? I personally believe social conventions play a crucial role in this. The coming together of people, societies to declare a certain object, experience or asset class, as something of value. We’ve seen it manifest itself throughout history. I imagine people walking into the Stable Gallery in New York in 1964 and being met by a display of Brillo boxes, the most mundane of objects, and being told that what they were looking at, was of the most relevant and consequential kind. A flat-out dismissal making way for a more nuanced and re-imagined acceptance/adaptation of art. Art being art, doing what it has done for centuries and that is consistently challenge society to expand its boundaries of perception of what art even is or could be.

And so, with NFTs we are asked to do a similar imaginative exercise, and that is, re-imagine the idea of value. If the digital art-file itself is not what is of value, than what is? The actual digital file is, in most cases, hosted in the IPFS (Inter Planetary File System), a protocol and peer-to-peer network for storing and sharing data in a distributed file system. In many cases, they are hosted by the marketplaces themselves and in all these scenarios, the likelihood of these data storage solutions shutting down and with it, the loss of the NFT file itself is very plausible. With that in mind then, what is of value, is the actual token, linking its owner to a specific digital work, forever recorded on the Blockchain. Indisputable and uncontested. It requires a bit of performative art, a flexing of social capital, of sorts. But nonetheless, the entire eco-system is coalescing around the concept and coming to a conventional understanding and acceptance that a recorded claim (token) to a specific artwork is indeed of great value. And that’s all that matters. After a super successful NFTNYC, where the NFT community and Crypto Twitter descended upon Times Square NY (read NYTimes take on the week) with a speaker pipeline of 600+ strong, there are a couple of key events coming up, solidifying the role of NFTs in the popular culture and worldwide adaptation: Metaverso and The Gateway at Art Basel.

Seedphrase DJ-ing at NFTNYC

Times Square NFTNYC Metaverso, is a single day program being hosted at San Juan, Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico on December 7th. Puerto Rico is actually home to a very active and vibrant NFT community. Hosted by gmoney, a prominent puertorican NFT collector and investor and Amanda Cassatt, head of Seratonin, a Web 3.0 agency with strong credentials in the tech infrastructure-building NFT space. They have recently partnered with Sotheby’s to build their NFT marketplace Sotheby’s Metaverse. There will be some notable artists like Fvckrender, Cath Simard etc as well as the folks at SuperRare and NFT Now.

Museo de Arte, San Juan Puerto Rico The Gateway at Art Basel in Miami is being hosted by Christie’s and NFT Now. The event will take place in a financial office building re-imagined as a 23,000 sf gallery. According to a release for the event, The space will be set up as an “immersive maze, taking attendees through an audiovisual journey, Guests will begin the experience in an unassuming corporate lobby, then exit the elevators high above the Miami Harbor where they can explore several rooms featuring a diverse selection of artwork.” Looking at the lineup, it seems pretty impressive with works from established A-listers like X-Copy, Coldie, Federico Clapis, Skygolpe etc.

Random Stuff:

  • The fairly new editorial project The NFT Magazine, a magazine meant to be read and collected on the Ethereum Blockchain, just announced that Coldie will be the artist to design the cover of the second issue. Last time I checked, a copy was for sale on OpenSea for $542

  • The SuperRare Spaces Race is in full swing with the following contenders in the first top 5 places: MoCA (Museum of Crypto Art in 1st with 5.8m votes, 33NFT is 2nd with 4.5m, The Foundry (MoCDA) 3rd with 3.8m votes, Metafisica is 4th with 2.97m votes and New French Touch is 5th with 2.8m votes

  • Excited about the CryptoCubans Social Club project, a super cool NFT project organized by Cuba’s fast-rising crypto art community.

That’s all for this week. Wishing everyone a great Thanksgiving weekend. Alla prossima, Michele

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