Artist Spotlight: Creators Expanding NFT Possibilities
The rise of NFTs has broadened the accessibility of mixed media art. This kind of art blends two or more media – such as photography and collage, film and AI art, dance and animation – often resulting in deeply unique pieces. As NFTs, these pieces can be collected in mere clicks.
Digital art naturally fits with mixed media. Animation, illustration, video, and many other art styles that can be layered into mixed media pieces are necessarily digital. Even traditionally analog arts like drawing are now often made using digital tools. Of course, the latest art and tech craze, AI, is also digital. AI adds yet another dimension to the many possibilities available to digital mixed media creators.
Many artists in Avalanche’s trailblazing arts program, Avaissance, make mixed media art. Here are three of the many creators reimagining what artists can do.
As a specialist who cuts and layers collage art, P. Sant’ana isn’t an artist you’d expect to get into NFTs. And yet, he’s all in. “The opportunity that NFTs give to artists is significant,” he said. “As someone from Brazil who has worked as a gallery curator, I know how little space is given to small artists. With NFTs, everyone has at least a fighting chance.”
P. Sant’ana mints on many blockchains. He works from two big desks in his São Paulo home, one for a computer and scanner, the other his cutting area. Vintage photos of people are the starting point for his work. He gets them from collectors and flea markets.
His cabinets contain 1,000+ vintage photos, as well as colored papers and the supplies he uses to alter images of “forgotten” people, aiming to give “the viewer a sense of empathy for these characters as they try to picture their personalities.”
His collages spin with tactical rips and patterns of geometric cutouts, the depicted person’s eyes shifted and the symmetries altered, making you see the subject anew.
He’s thrilled to bring his unique pieces to Avalanche. “I see Avalanche NFTs as an eager art community with eager collectors supporting them,” he said. “It’s a place where artists can be artists.”
Tara Rose Morris, who makes art as Tara Moves, creates animated pieces that live up to the promise of her name – they move like crazy. A “new media artist” who has done a dozen IRL exhibitions, Tara unites painting, film, and media theory. Lately, she has been storytelling through dance animations.
“My art is an eclectic response to the world around me, a meditation of my experiences through the constraints of my abilities, full of color and movement,” she said.
Her commitment to Web3 is deeper than art. She’s a believer in blockchain, emphasizing that it has the potential to benefit many people. She’s also into NFTs.
“NFTs are an opportunity to take self overship of provenance as an artist,” she explained. “I love having digital documentation of my creative history on-chain, and I’m looking forward to looking back on it as time goes on.”
Some of her future history will be kept on Avalanche.
Tara, an Avalanche newcomer, says the ecosystem is “uniquely supportive” of digital creators. “I’ve seen Avalanche do some incredible artist- and community-first initiatives,” she said, citing Avaissance and this year’s Avalanche Park concert in Los Angeles.
Tara also likes the tech. “Low gas fees make engagement with NFTs accessible in a way that’s crucial to their place in the arts industry,” she said.
Her Avaissance project will channel ideas she’s been exploring since the beginning of her artist’s journey. “I’m excited to create alongside so many talented artists and with such expert mentorship,” she said. “I’m excited to have an opportunity to tell my own story.”
Jahmel Reynolds blends music, video, and AI into “contemporary futurism.” He’s a music video director, one of the first to bring music videos on-chain. His NFTs are even featured in Time Magazine’s The Seven Collection. Though established, Jah is pumped for where Avaissance might take him.
“Avaissance has been a really fun experience,” he said. “I have two mentors, John Le and Emonee. It has been really dope because I appreciate how their teaching styles are different.”
Jah hadn’t explored Avalanche until recently. He’s enjoying his intro. “Everyone has been super cool,” he said. “Even when I got announced into the residency, people from the Avalanche community reached out and told me how excited they were for me.”
When creating, Jah pulls from his experience and heritage. He’s a protean storyteller who hungrily adopts emergent tools. “Whatever visual medium speaks to me, I tap into that medium,” he said.
Lately, that has meant AI.
Today, Jah uses both Midjourney and Stable Diffusion. Still, you can tell his work is firmly grounded by his set of influences, especially his home Brooklyn. “AI is a collaborative tool,” he explained. “I’m taking all my creative knowledge from my mediums – film, 3D, and screenwriting – and I’m taking all that knowledge and introducing a new layer.”
His biggest project so far is Helmet City. This street-art-meets-sci-fi AI series celebrates “Brooklyn, New York, hiphop, and tokusatsu (the genre that birthed the Power Rangers).” Helmet City consists of 151 images. Jah wants to make a Helmet City movie.
Jah’s eager to tackle Avaissance and to learn yet another medium: Avalanche.
For more on Avaissance, visit the pioneering program’s homepage.
Provided for informational purposes only, without representation, warranty or guarantee of any kind. None of this is as an endorsement by Ava Labs, Inc., the Avalanche Foundation Limited or any of their respective subsidiaries or affiliates, nor is any of this investment or financial advice. Please review this Notice and conduct your own research to properly evaluate the risks and benefits of any project.
Avalanche is a smart contracts platform that scales infinitely and regularly finalizes transactions in less than one second. Its novel consensus protocol, Subnet infrastructure, and HyperSDK toolkit enable Web3 developers to easily launch powerful, custom blockchain solutions. Build anything you want, any way you want, on the eco-friendly blockchain designed for Web3 devs.