Art collaboration is the undeniable cornerstone of modern pop culture. The convergence of ultimately captured creative minds in one work of art is something that has always excited audiences, critics, and the creative community.
Take, for example, The Marilyn Diptych by American pop art pioneer Andy Warhol. The iconic piece is based on a teaser image of Marilyn Monroe in the thriller Noir 1953 Niagara. Regardless of the actress’ undeniable allure, the picture itself didn’t stand out until Warhol rolled it, making it one of the 20th century’s most impressive masterpieces. But is this enough of an argument to justify the fact that the photographer or studio behind the original didn’t make any profit from the painting? After all, it was their photo – not Andy’s. While this is a closed case, there are millions of similar cases. A new generation of non-fungible symbols (NFTs) may be the solution artists are hoping for.
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Unflinching icons are changing the art world by giving painters, musicians, fashion designers (and just about anyone) a safe way to distribute original pieces while retaining copyright and copyright. At the same time, collectors get protected ownership through the blockchain of these pieces. What if collectors wanted to use the pieces they acquired as a basis for creating their artwork? He might say: Promote them. Can NFTs ensure co-creation of art?
Promotions can take any shape or form. A brave collector could, for example, draw a red line over Beeple’s $69 million NFT or take Hokusai’s recently digitized Great Wave and add a surfboard. But as fun as this can be, there are legal issues to contend with, so it may be worth taking the risks into account. With the features offered by upgradeable NFTs, everything can be done within a compromise. Artists can release multiple copies of their NFTs, making only some of them upgradable.
Many blockchain players in the NFT space are trying to work in this direction. For example, Wakatta markets itself as a “blockchain designed to meet the needs of the entertainment industry.” To achieve such an ambitious goal, it has developed a series of new NFT types – upgradeable, time-limited and text-based. From a technological point of view, this network is being developed on top of Substrate, which is the same technology framework used by Polkadot. As Alex Blagirev, Head of the Wakata Project, said: “Digital technologies make it easier for everyone to become creators of some sort. The creator economy is a reality, particularly in entertainment, and we need solutions that adapt and enhance it.” he added:
“Unmovable tokens and artists are a match made in heaven because of the endless flow of possibilities they create.”
The same idea could work with other industries: Startup Ether cards help create custom NFTs, create dynamic cards that activate discounts, enable access, unlock features, connect to physical items, grant upgrades, and make changes based on real-world events. They’ve partnered with basketball player LaMelo Ball to create a dynamic NFT for him.
A good example of the gaming industry is Phantasma – a blockchain focused on gaming applications – which also offers a similar NFT feature for game developers to control the time available for their in-game assets.
Related: Non-fungible tokens from a legal perspective
NFTs and the music industry
Musicians have also jumped on the NFT bandwagon in the past year, with artists like Eminem, Steve Aoki, and Grimes selling a total of $10 million in NFT copies of their songs. The latter managed to sell a one-of-a-kind video titled “Death of the Old”, for $389,000.
The music industry is facing increasing pressure from artists around the world who are speaking out against perceived unfair compensation from streaming players such as Spotify and Apple Music. In April, stars Paul McCartney, Kate Bush and Noel Gallagher presented a joint letter to UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson urging a discussion of revenue stream reforms. With complaints accumulating, non-fungible icons quickly became a convenient alternative for artists to distribute exclusive content directly to their fans, without an intermediary. Furthermore, NFT artists that can be upgraded can also make it easier to create remixes, bypassing the complex and costly legal processes usually associated with collaborations.
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Time-limited NFTs can also be particularly useful in this industry. In default settings, tickets to concerts or music festivals can be converted to NFTs, giving access to specific time slots, for example. As with any other smart contract, organizations or artists can configure it to be reusable or use games as they see fit. Once they expire, the tokens can still retain value, appreciate as collectibles, and can legitimately be re-marketed as souvenirs.
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No one can say exactly what the future will look like. But one thing is for sure: NFTs are much more than just cat-themed JPGs. Their use cases are rapidly spreading into new areas, reaching areas that have not yet been explored by blockchain technology such as artist collaborations, music revenue and even events.
The opinions, ideas and opinions expressed herein are those of the author alone and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of Cointelegraph.
Alexandra Lausanne He is a Ph.D. Student researching the relationship between new technologies and art at Ca’ Foscari University in Venice. For nearly a decade Alexandra has been organizing tech conferences and other events in Europe dedicated to blockchain technology and artificial intelligence. She is equally interested in the relationship between blockchain technology and art.