Step into the future of art with us as we traverse the fascinating realms of digital art and the metaverse alongside our esteemed guests, Auronda Scalera and Alfredo Cramerotti. They're the creative minds spearheading the innovative multiplicity of artistic direction at xxnft and co-directors of the Infinity Art Museum.
xxnft – the future of crypto is female xxnft is an art curating, collection management & publishing business focused on the work of women artists adopting new technologies such as blockchain and NFTs (non-fungible tokens i.e. digital, distributed proof of authenticity and ownership of an artwork)
The Infinity Art Museum is the first ever-evolving art museum in the Metaverse. It promotes art by connecting artists, curators, and collectors in a creative and immersive way.
As we venture deep into the heart of NFTs and digital art, prepare to uncover a whole new dimension of artistic potential that expands the boundaries of contemporary art beyond our wildest dreams.
This discussion takes an intriguing turn as we address the crucial issue of gender representation in the digital art space. Listen to firsthand accounts of the trials, tribulations, and triumphs encountered in creating a diverse community of women artists within the metaverse. Learn how digital art could serve as an equalizer, providing a platform for voices from underrepresented groups to be heard loud and clear.
Offering a unique perspective, Auronda and Alfredo shed light on the interplay between traditional art history and the digital realm. They highlight the importance of artistic vision in shaping the future of museums, both physical and virtual. Whether you're a creator, collector, or an enthusiast exploring the digital art world, this episode provides valuable insights and thought-provoking perspectives. Step in, and let's redefine the art world together.
This episode was recorded through a StreamYard call on June 22, 2023. Read the blog article here: https://webdrie.net/the-future-museum-a-dive-into-nfts-and-artistic-vision-with-auronda-scalera-and-alfredo-cramerotti/
If you're interested in our W3X Mastermind, please send me a DM on LinkedIn, Twitter or Instagram.
So I'm a curator and I come from the contemporary art world, but originally I studied digital art and for a long, long time I put aside this passion for this study, and three, four years ago I discovered again digital art. I rediscovered it because there was this big movement and community about digital art.Joeri:
Hello everyone and welcome to The Web3 CMO Stories podcast, season 2, episode 8. My name is Joeri Billast and I'm your podcast host, and today I'm excited to be joined by two guests. So my guests actually are the innovative artistic direction duo, Alfredo Cramerotti, and Auronda Scalera, the co-direct Multiplicity XX NFT and the Infinity Art Museum, pioneering platforms that champion diversity in the realm of Web3 art. Auronda Scalera is a global ambassador for contemporary and digital art and shares her expertise from London, Dubai, and the Metaverse on platforms such as Sky TV, the UK Houses of Lords, and the World Economic Forum. Alfredo Cramerotti is a specialist in artistic direction and culture theory, the director of MOSSIN, wales' leading contemporary art institution, and a distinguished advisor and author in the world of art and technology. You know you guys have had such a long buyer so I needed to get it a bit done. So welcome to the show.Alfredo:
Thank you. Thank you, jury. I'm really, really pleased to be here.Auronda:
Thank you really. I'm so happy to be here.Joeri:
I'm excited too, so at first. so the question that I have is what first attracted you both to the world of digital art and specifically to NFTs and the metaverse? Can you share a bit of your journey?Alfredo:
I won't, I just start.Auronda:
Yeah, of course, like usual. So I'm a curator and I come from the contemporary art world, but originally I studied digital art and for a long, long time I put aside this passion for this study, and three, four years ago I discovered again digital art. I rediscovered it because there was all this big movement and community about digital art and then I decided again to restart, let's say, or study again digital art and organize study, research about artists, and concepts, and organize exhibitions and research about new technology, AI, Metaverse, and NFTs. And then at one point, I met Alfredo. we had the same interest and here we are.Alfredo:
And for me it's a similar but different trajectory. Jury, i have a background. I mean, i'm an curator as well. I work in contemporary art. I direct a contemporary physical art museum in the UK but originally I come from design and media. So I did study design and then I actually made a living as a kind of a space design for retail complex and then I progressively, when I started to actually work in art, I first approached that side through media production in terms of early web projects from the 90s and radio and TV, for instance. So for both of us, I think it was a natural sort of progression to find ourselves. When we met a few years ago it was 2019 we started to work together because there was this kind of nascent, kind of booming digital art space, that was somehow shaping something new and from an artistic point of view, it was really interesting to see how this kind of a community was emerging with creative production, which was exciting. So we started actually to talk about it and since you know, four years now, we are working as a curatorial duo.Joeri:
Okay, that's really interesting and you know there were already a few guests talking about art on my show, but then it was mostly linked to NFTs and in your case, you're also doing stuff with the Metaverse. So I'm curious about that. Can you share a bit of what you're doing about your experiences with art and the Metaverse?Auronda:
Yeah, our first approach was about the Infinity Art Museum that we are building, And for us it's really important to bridge the gap between physical and digital space, exploring this realm that can coexist in a metaverse. The Infinity Art Museum is basically the first contemporary art museum ever evolving in digital art, And each room is not a room but is an experience that, when you enter the Infinity Art Museum, you can find yourself flying or in the ocean, or swimming in the ocean or, depending on the artist. It's not about us And that's the precious, peculiar thing about Metaverse, because you can have some experience that in real life is impossible to get.Alfredo:
And that was precisely the way. it was exciting for us actually, because when we were approached by the founder of the Infinity Art Museums and the backers and we were approached as curators, really it was interesting for us that this kind of metaverse experience and platform was not coming from someone who collected digital arts and then they wanted to show digital art in the digital space. It was coming from a number of people, a group of people who wanted to have an artistic vision for how a museum of the future, of the 21st century, embracing digital arts, could work and could operate. And for us, the best thing was to imagine. for us, actually, digital art is an expansion of contemporary art, put it very, very simply. And then we engage artists, we commission artists to produce digital artworks for the metaverse platform, for the Infinity Art Museum, that wouldn't be possible to experience physically in the three dimensions of our space. So it's an exciting opportunity for the artist, first of all, to be able to explore this fourth dimension, let's say fifth dimension, if we include time and for us as a curator, because you do have different procedures And I think probably you want to know I remember actually, with one of the lines that you wanted to discuss what is the difference between curating in real life, so to speak, and curating in the metaverse? And Arundh, maybe you can mention this one because we had a lot of discussion about it.Joeri:
Yeah, yeah, we will for sure talk about that, and I love the thing that you say that it's not that the Metaverse is replacing the real world. It's just something valuable that you have been adding. And actually, you don't know that, probably, but I've been organizing an AI art exhibition on spatial like it was a competition that every marketer in the Rise community where I'm a part could just create something with digital art, AI, and put it in an exhibition room on spatial and we voted on that. But yeah, Alfredo, because you mentioned that, please continue what are those differences.Alfredo:
Arundh, you go ahead with that. Actually, the difference between real life and digital, I think is quite exciting Then for sure.Auronda:
First of all, is the experience. The Digital world and the real world are completely different And each artist can expand their creativity in the digital world. They can create whatever they want. That's the point, the key point, and for them, it's really exciting And even for people that make this experience in the digital world is like an expansion or day perception. There are a lot of museums now in real life that try to combine these experiences all around the world.Alfredo:
And this is not about translating the architectural and physical environment digitally. I think it's more about allowing artists to think outside the box, in that sense, to use it, kind of a common side. So just, and this is the same with to be fairly honest, it's the same with musical geek on the Metaverse as well. It's, yes, you can have the recording of the Real Eye Geek concert and put it on a Metaverse platform, but it's more accessible to a broader audience. but in terms of the experience, you're kind of missing out on something. I think it's more important that you design that experience as a totally immersive environment in which you can listen to the music and see something else, and even listen to the music in another way, through maybe your body, if you use wearable devices, for instance, That's something that you wouldn't experience if you're there in physical life. So it's another layer of experience and that's why, for us, it's an expansion of the contemporary art world, the digital art. It's not just a replacement or a translation of it.Joeri:
Yeah, yeah, it sounds really exciting and it also makes sense as you explained it. Another technology in Web3 is obviously NFT, so you mentioned the Metaverse. Are you approaching the integration of digital art, and NFTs you know these new technologies together in the exhibition?Auronda:
Then for now, there is some new integration with NFT, with metaverse, allowing, for example, to see which is the oven or trading of digital artwork, and probably the next step for me is more democratized art reaching a global audience.Alfredo:
Yeah, I think the NFT allows utilities. That's a key concept somehow for us as a curator to understand how artists mint NFT and as artworks as an NFT and kind of unlock potential utilities which you know. That can be very different. It can be you know kind of not just the authenticity and the ownership of the artwork itself being digital or physical, but also unlocking, you know, potential meetings or gatherings or curatorial expertise, for instance, or advice or artist access to those producers and as well as the access of a like-minded community of people. So I think that's important because if you go into a physical gallery or museum, you obviously have that kind of like-mindedness but you don't have specific utilities or you don't have specific experiences when you buy a certain artwork. You are part of the you know kind of that sort of milieu, so to say, because you invested into that either financially or emotionally or in terms of time, but you might actually not have that level of access with NFT and provide through their utilities.Joeri:
Right here you say the word experience. It's not only about art, it's really about the experience also around. that I know, Alfredo. you also have published a lot of texts I think about 200 texts on art, media, and curational practice. In a very long time, I have to say In a very long time okay yeah, you know, but the question actually I wanted to ask you is how do you take that discussion around digital art as changed from the academic view of in the professional world, from an academic point of view, I think they're still on parallel tracks.Alfredo:
I must say. We are actually putting together as a duo a sort of research that will end up in a publication at some point. And I think that on parallel tracks because the scholarship on contemporary art is very much about contextualizing art in terms of a historic lineage or a societal or political sort of a context, and kind of trying to figure out the relationship between these three different aspects, like history, politics, social society, in terms of through the lens of the artist, and that goes for critical theory as well and art theory For the digital part of it. It has been much more focused on technological development and this kind of idea of human and machine interaction and from the cyborg manifesto to now NFT and immersive and AI, for instance. So I think that there is a skew towards the technological aspect more than the art, historical and societal and political part, and I think that I don't know, maybe you disagree, but I think, for what we see is slowly what we are doing as curators are bridging these two fields At the moment. They come from different sources both in terms of the production of art and the presentation of art and the mediation of art to the public and also in terms of its theorization and historicization and contextualization in art, human knowledge type of way. Slowly they will sort of be a match. We are not there yet, it will take a year or even decades, but somehow I think that academically they're still very separate.Joeri:
Yeah, another thing, because we are early, of course, with everything, and often I see in the Web3 space, in the Metaverse, I see a lot of men in there. I know, Auronda, I think you have been also facing challenges to have more women in the metaverse space. Can you talk a bit about that? Have you been addressing these challenges? How did you do that?Auronda:
Yeah, thank you for asking. With Alfredo, we are the founder of this company that is called Multiplicity XX NFT, and we're trying to put together women and women artists in the space because it has been an ongoing challenge with several factors, including historical gender disparities for a long time and we tried to have this focus and creating inclusive community with women artists, organize events and workshop for them and exhibition, and we interviewed more than 100 artists in the space, tried to better understand which were all the issues for them to enter in the space and all the time we provide some mentorship for them, some networking opportunity. then we organize some exhibitions all around the world, in particular with some artists that for them is harder to get in the space because, for example, Katie McIntyre, Alfredo, Yeah, that's a good example. Yeah, because she worked with Politico Body, then it's complicated for her to expose her artwork and to be accepted to some museum gallery and exhibition. So yes, this is basically what we are doing.Alfredo:
Generally speaking, we realized that there was some sort of a historical pattern repeating in the digital space, that there were art history patterns. So you look at in the 50s and the 60s and the 70s I don't know just taken as an example American expression, for instance, and the whole movements in New York, and there was as good as many women actually working back then, but the visibility it was granted only to their male sort of counterparts and only now, since 10 years maybe, there are actually great women artists solo exhibition, museum presentation, academic books, actually addressing the importance of the world but most of them are dead because we arrived there like 60, 70 years too late And there was this kind of a in 2020, 2021, 2022. there was this kind of a similar pattern because nine out of 10 of the most selling NFTs were male and 90% of the market was actually male and western and we knew a lot of female artists actually or female- identifying artists either by birth or by choice, and they say hold on, where are they actually? Why are they not there actually in the market? Why are they not selling? Because the words were great. So we started the platform multiplicity double X NFT but decided to basically change the stats in a way from the very beginning of the space and not just, you know, kind of changing 2030, 50 years afterward. We believe that digital art is a great leveler in a way, because you know there are a lot of underrepresented groups if we talk about, you know, kind of a class or income or geographical or sort of a location you know, think about the global south that you know they're not, they're not part of the legacy artwork, so to speak, or they are, but very limited because you do have all this kind of a straight out of, you know, the art school and the art studio run space and the small gallery and the big gallery and the small institution and the big institution and the big collection, which you don't have actually in the digital art. You, you do have the peer-to-peer network validation, and then from that, from the validation from your peers, actually, there are actually some echo and megaphone effects that reach out to editors and curators and directors of museums, etc. And that's a great opportunity, I think, for arts in general.Joeri:
Yeah, yeah, it's interesting that you have these different goals and that you are thinking about all of that, so you have this broader perspective, I feel. Also, of course, another important thing is marketing, because you need to get to know what are you doing, or what action you're taking when it comes to marketing, to promote digital art, to promote metaverse experiences.Auronda:
For sure. we're trying to involve more collectors For us it's really important to interview our artists in some newspapers and to amplify their voices, and about that, we also try to build a community. This is the real marketing people that speak about our project and not only about the newspaper. let's see.Alfredo:
Yeah, for sure. Actually, I think the community building aspect, which is embedded in Web3, I think is crucial for us as a curatorial duo, because we work a lot with, in close proximity with, the artists and platform builders and collectors buying those works And also the technical producer, for instance, kind of helping artists doing that. And for us, word of mouth is what really brings all these different actors together. You do have the media, you know the press release, the media communication strategy, the journalists and the art writers And we write quite a lot ourselves actually and publish But I do think it's the most exciting thing really is to leave the community And that's, for us, the best marketing tool, so to speak.Joeri:
Yeah, that's what I hear a lot, you know, when I talk to people. It's building this community. It takes time, you know, but if those artists or have already an audience, and then you can bring them into the community, and then you know, tell about the metaverse, making them believe what can happen in the metaverse, what is possible, because that's of course, also a challenge. These days You hear about the metaverse. Is it still a thing? So do you?Auronda:
What is it?Joeri:
Yeah, actually, what is it? Is it Facebook?Alfredo:
So, yeah, I think it's also important to say that the Web3 community and the digital space community generally speaking are very, very supportive of each other. It's, you know, coming from the contemporary art world ourselves. you know, at the beginning we were like really surprised how, you know, accessible and nice and really helpful The players, everyone actually, which is probably not the case all the time in the art world, to put it mildly.Joeri:
Yeah, but that's a good thing, and so that you have like-minded people around it. You know, that's also, I think, one of the things of a community the characteristics that people are supportive of each other and want to help out and so on. So you are doing something amazing, something new, so you will also attract, I guess, those people that are interested in those new technologies. At this moment, I think, when we are recording the podcast, you are preparing for a multi-location exhibition on the historical part of digital art and NFTs. Okay, let's talk a bit about that. What can attendees expect And how do you plan to engage audiences, both physically and virtually?Alfredo:
Shall I go? The project you mentioned is called Web2Verse, as the title suggests, basically, it's a bit of a trace in the historical arch of the development of digital arts from actually from the 50s and the 60s, from mathematical patterns, from artists working with this idea of patterns and through the whole early computer art and net art and activism and gaming and up to now basically with Web3 and NFT and crypto arts. And we are doing this with a colleague of ours, Valentino Catricala, and it's a multi-location exhibition that spans a few continents. The idea is precisely to have a bit of a decentralized exhibition and not, you know, having a massive exhibition with, you know, 200 artists tracking basically the whole history of digital art, but having, let's say, 10 exhibitions with 20 artists each I'm simplifying here And every iteration of the project will be different, with a different list of artists, different location, geographical location, different institutional contexts and with an associate curator working with us who's placed actually there, because we want actually to have some sort of a local, sort of community ties as well. So we kick off in Manchester, in the UK, this autumn and then we travel a bit to the UAE and the US and Asia And it's exciting because it's as never as the Infinity Art Museum. It's a never evolving commissioning and collecting institution. The Web2verse is kind of a never evolving exhibition about digital art And it fits into the idea of, you know, not being top- down but being almost ground up in a way and decentralized, and so it makes sense in that way.Auronda:
Yeah, and for us it's really important the concept of DAO curating is because for the first time in general in contemporary art there are one, two, three curators And in this process of our exhibition, in each place, in each country, there is an associate curator. That brings a new vision because we cannot be experts about all the art all around the world, let's say. Then they give us their knowledge.Alfredo:
And their contact and their expertise locally, which is super important. And then just to mention, is that the exhibition as a general structure is divided into four main areas, so each iteration of the project includes between, let's say, 10 and 25 artists, which touch upon these four main areas. So it's all to discover really.Auronda:
Now, if you want to see all the exhibitions, you have to follow each venue for one year. One year and all for two years.Alfredo:
It's like a long process, a research of ours Is a journey in the form of an exhibition.Joeri:
Yes, Actually, it's so fascinating listening to you and all these projects that you are doing. We could talk for hours, I guess, but you mentioned already Oranda. They need to follow you, my listeners. So if people want to follow you, they are listening to the show. They are fascinated, like me. They want to know what is happening, what you guys are doing. Where would you like to send them?Alfredo:
I would say probably the best way to follow us is on Instagram, Yeah, And because we post quite a lot on Instagram, because it's more visual, just for that reason, really, and on Twitter for announcements, and because we're doing different things at the Web-to-wares. we have its own platf orm, Art Dubai Digital has its own platform. The Infinity Art Museum has its own platform. We have our respective, you know, LinkedIn and website.Joeri:
So probably with kind of an Instagram, you can sort of have a sense of what's going on.Joeri:
So is it easy to find you both on Instagram, because I will put the handles, of course, in the show notes. Is it just with your name?Auronda:
Name and surname.Joeri:
Name and surname.Alfredo:
Yeah, and for me instead is a name, a term, is curator view. Okay, so it's Auronda Scalera and curator view.Joeri:
Okay, yeah, because you have so many things going on, I think it's easier to follow the person. It's like for me.Alfredo:
Yeah, exactly, and it's the same for Twitter as well. We keep the same names actually as well.Joeri:
That's great, and if you have different projects, like Superstern, it's easier to find. So thanks so much, Alfredo. Thanks so much, Auronda.Alfredo:
Thank you. Thank you, you're very nice to talk to you And, yes, good luck for the rest of the series.Joeri:
Yeah, it was a pleasure to listen to you. People are now listening to this show. As you know, there will be show notes, there will be a blog article, there will be, a later time, even an infographic, and so on. So if you are not yet subscribed to this podcast, I think it's a good moment to do that. If you think now about people that could be interested in Auronda and Alfredo's story, please share this podcast episode with them And, of course, I would like to see you back for the next episode. Bye. Web3 can take your best to new heights And you're ready to harness its power, but feeling lost and overwhelmed. Therefore, join my W3X Web3 Mastermind. Send me a personal message for more info. You can find me everywhere on social media. There's only one person with my name, Jorri Billast. Talk soon.