Street art is truly fascinating because it’s full of contradiction.
Bold but humble. Public but personal.
Powerful but fragile. Ephemeral and meaningful.
Expensive to produce but free to consume.
Graffiti can speak volumes with only a few letters.
From an underground, criminal activity to mainstream and galleries appreciation, urban art has gone a long way.
Today, blockchain technology gives artists the chance to take their art one step further with NFT.
NFT has become the technological, financial, and artistic standard that empowers creators in our digital life. Street artists often wonder why they should embrace such an innovative medium.
Here are five reasons why NFT is specifically excellent for graffiti and street artists.
1. Better archive your artworks
First of all, creating an NFT of your physical mural allow for better conservation. The concept is called “tokenizing.” When doing so, you are creating a digital identity to your artwork that will live on an open and public ledger called a blockchain.
A good blockchain has the potential to live for eternity as it’s a shared database coupled with ingenious game theory. It also constantly rewards people around the world for securing information on it.
Even if you are not planning to sell your work with NFT, tokenizing it is an important habit to take. It creates a censorship-resistant and eternal digital trace for a physically ephemeral artwork.
You can keep posting your artwork on social media, but it’s arguably more coherent to first do it on a blockchain. If the Internet becomes a Metaverse, full of digital cities, a blockchain is the digital equivalent of the street because it’s open, public, and shared — quite the opposite of Instagram.
Creating ephemeral artworks is poetic. Turning them into an eternal NFT is pragmatic.
2. Reclaim Your Intellectual Property (IP)
One benefit and arguably the best one is that it allows street artists to reclaim intellectual property over physical artworks.
If you didn’t know, every graffers and street artist has IP on their artwork regardless of the legality, as long as it’s original. That is the case in most jurisdictions around the world.
Until now, artists were not often credited with their art. Brands and individuals often abuse their IP because claiming and defending rights in court means making their identity public. It is not something that most artists are comfortable with.
Thanks to NFT and the beauty of web3, you can reclaim your artworks without having to reveal your “real” legal identity. You just have to prove you are the artist. Pseudonymous is enough in web3. But the IP protection that NFT provides can go beyond web3.
At Wallkanda, we are working with Ato to ensure the NFT generated on our platform has legal validity in our physical jurisdictions. Artists can easily generate a license that will be attached to their NFT. Through this, artists can start protecting themselves better from societal abuses.
3. More and Better Interaction With Your Fans
One of the reasons why NFT emerged during lockdown is that people had to find ways to reconnect with culture and one another digitally.
NFTs have created a direct way of interaction with fans that enable closer relationships between the artist and the collector. Since middlemen (such as auction houses and brokers) have been removed, artists and collectors have a more direct and personal way to connect.
For artists, NFTs are a great medium to bond with fans. For collectors, showing appreciation for the work and talent of an artist we admire is extremely rewarding.
Additionally, artists can be exposed to new audiences worldwide.
The NFT community is very tight, welcoming, generous, and helpful. Whether you are an OG or an emerging artist seeking to build your presence, the community will open endless doors of artistic opportunities.
The best advice we can give you is: Keep your community close to you. Nurture them, and they will nurture your back.
4. Increase Your Impact
Street art significantly impacts cities and citizens’ cultural, social, and economic standpoints. Like any art form, it has psychological and spiritual benefits for those who dare listen.
In today’s society, artists are loud advocates of the issue that has a more personal meaning. More often than not, there is a social message inside the art that provokes emotions, questions beliefs, and makes everyone think deeper about the world.
NFT can increase the impact of their art just by keeping on doing what they love: creating.
More than just awareness, you can now raise funds for a cause aligned with your values and ideas. Auctioning your work for a cause is noble, but you can go beyond that.
With our collab-splitter feature, you can quickly generate addresses on NFT sales and royalties with multiple beneficiaries.
With our partner Gaia Gives, you can support causes and track them through the blockchain and ensure the non-profit is making good use of your funds.
Using these two features together, you can create a more sustainable, regular, and consistent income for the social causes your art denounces.
5. New sources of income
Last but not least, with NFT comes new ways to fund and monetize your work.
Artists don’t have to starve anymore with web3. With the support of their community, they can generate a regular source of income from their creation.
The classic model is in 3 steps:
- Create artwork in the street.
- Turn it into an NFT.
- Sell the NFT.
You will then receive payment, not just on direct sales but also on secondary sales. That’s the big difference with the traditional art market. You can program the royalties and if your art is liquid, make a passive income for life with it.
This 3-step process is the standard model. But NFT can do much more for the artists. We only scratched the surface of what is possible, and more exciting innovative models will come to life soon.
The next step of graffiti and street art evolution is here. Using web3 technology and NFT, we can genuinely empower artists in ways not possible before.
At Wallkanda, we are excited to explore hand in hand with artists, festival organizers, galleries, and cities. We can work together on finding new and innovative models for funding giant murals, spreading art, and beautifying our cities.
If you are interested in working with us or simply curious, consider joining our discord: https://discord.gg/mWHjrJnjmn.
We want to be the best technological support the urban art world has ever met!