NFTs and Art

A brief interpretation of the relationship between Art and new artistic mediums and, therefore, NFTs

Modernity and the End of Art

Modernity saw the emergence of new technologies of communication and reproduction, which would forever change what civilization understood by art. In this context, theorists of the Frankfurt school, already in the 20th century, signaled the transformation of ritualistic art into political art, a movement that succeeded what Hegel called the end of art. The end of art represents the death of the fine art of antiquity and the birth of conceptual art, art that references itself in its own context.
Wanderer above the sea of fog - Caspar David Friedrich, 1818
In the Age of Capital, society's relationship with art became mediated by the market, a totalitarian entity that aims to reach all audiences with the standardized reproduction of contemporary aesthetics. Self-referencing has become an imperative marked by art created to be reproduced.

Art and the City Space

Girl with balloon - Banksy, 2002
At the same time, with the exponential growth of urban space - the metropolis - and all its incongruities and inequalities, peripheral, underground, marginal art also appears. Graffiti and all its techniques and signatures spread across bridges, walls, poles and buildings, giving visibility to those forgotten by museums and auction houses. However, what is born as an alternative to the market is quickly absorbed by it: we see walls painted by Banksy being auctioned for millionaire figures. In this sense, graffiti is legitimized as art from the sense of community that involves the participants of these movements. And in modernity, art is also defined as the mutual recognition between individuals linked by ideas, tastes and aesthetics.

Art, the virtual space and NFTs

Collage of popular NFTs
Naturally, NFTs are the latest step in this process. They are artistic formats that propagate an aesthetic from which entire communities recognize themselves in a common identity. Common, however, with its due particularities.
While the nature of a NFT is its uniqueness, commonly NFTs belong to a collection generated randomly (or as we have seen, in most cases this generation is pseudorandom). In this randomness one finds the authenticity anticipated by Benjamin in the 20th century, authenticity in which everyone (and anyone) can be identified.

Yung Pixels

The Yung Pixels collection contains everything that represents the virtual imaginary of our time: pixelated art that nostalgically goes back to the times of the first video games, the urban aesthetic that references the space in which our experiences take place (and through which we can recognize as citizens), the technology of algorithms and smart contracts, so important for the proliferation of alternatives to the centralization of capital, and so on. And not only that: Yung Pixels is also rebellious, as it goes against the biggest trends in NFT marketplaces: we use Chainlink technology for a truly random reveal, which is completely optional (no centralized reveals), we charge a fair amount of royalties, and the storage of metadata is decentralized. In this way, we are in line with the theories that inspired our artistic vision: art in modernity revolts against the normalizing functions of tradition; Modernity takes place in the experience of rebelling against everything that is normative.
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