Crypto graffiti, NFT murals, digital street art, how ze heck are we calling this movement ??
When the two major art movements of the 21st century meet, it is hard to define the outcome.
And even harder to choose a name.
NFT meets street art. Street art meets NFT.
It’s a perfect match in terms of utility, but not in naming.
Do we necessarily need etiquette to put all of these creators in the same box?
No, not really. Each artist is unique. They have their own universe and hidden treasures.
But naming and designating a movement brings many advantages.
In the complex era we live in, everything is branding. A catchy name serves as an identifiable entry point for all participants. It can also help people navigate the subtle complexity of the discipline and bring more visibility and artistic opportunities.
The street art side
Currently, it is not so easy and clear on the urban art side.
It’s very segmented, fragmented, and classified, yet overlapping
The terms urban art and street art have, in recent years, been used interchangeably.
Urban art encompasses all art genres, mediums, and forms. It includes graffiti, street art, and more. Urban Art can also define the Street Art movement out of the street and into galleries, museums, and private displays.
Street art historically came directly from graffiti culture. It is an artistic movement in public spaces. It uses mediums like stencils, posters, stickers, spray bombs, video projections, and even installation pieces.
Commonly, we talk about street art to designate the discipline. But street artists and graffers don’t like to be put in the same bag. Graffiti is the ancestor of street art. It is not just urban calligraphy, often vandal, but an entire culture.
Although there is no consensus on the frontiers, the inspiration behind urban art, street art, and graffiti is the same. It is a powerful message for the people who view the art. It is a visual reminder of human existence and questioning what can be considered an artistic medium.
According to this analysis, does turning graffiti into an NFT make it urban art?
The crypto side
At the root of the artistic and technological revolution that we are witnessing is a new technology called ‘Blockchain.’ It is designated as crypto, a short version of cryptocurrencies or crypto-assets. Crypto-assets come in different shapes and forms. The standard that is in our interest today is called NFT.
NFT is the type of crypto-assets that enables this new creative economy to emerge. This ugly anagram stands for Non-Fungible Token. It is misleading when trying to explain to newbies how revolutionary and powerful this digital tool truly is.
NFT is digital scarcity. It is the certificate that will make any digital artwork valuable. You can now own and collect rare cultural assets online. As there is so much positivity and media attention linked to NFT, this name will probably remain in our cultural landscape for a while.
NFT, Non-fungible, collectibles, nifties…
All these names are interchangeable, yet they lack distinction and visibility. It might be worth working on them continuously.
As naming the movement makes us more self-conscious, we probably need a name that englobes these two worlds to make it one so we can ask ourselves the difficult questions and set ourselves in the right direction.
- Cryptograffiti has been shotgun by an artist. His graffiti contribution is inexistent, and he defines himself as a Bitcoin activist. He found himself a catchy name but irrelevant with what he actually does.
- Digital street art does not capture the real innovation behind NFT, not as good as Cryptograffiti.
- Street Art NFT or its acronym SAN? The three words are quite long for an elusive movement.
- Web3 muralism: Weird, right?
- Tokenized urban art is pretty relevant, but it sounds weird if you’re not into crypto or street art.
- Street collectibles are pretty good but might be reduced for the significant artistic movement it represents.
It’s quite clear for us: we don’t have the answer. It has to come from the stakeholders of urban art: the artists and collectors themselves. Influencers and media will be the ones defining the name of the movement.
One insight that we can share firsthand is that this movement will expand and segment itself. Just like we have different subcategories included in the urban art movement.
There will be different methods of tokenizing and capturing the IP through NFT. The question is more, how do you consider yourself as an artist?
We are at the crossroad and the beginning of something beautiful and free. At this point, to define is to limit, which doesn’t make sense. All we can do is enable and enhance.
How would you call this revolutionary artistic movement?
Is it going to be a niche movement or just the logical continuity of urban art?