despace is an official Tezos community space in Berlin that provides pathways for involvement in Web3 through events, workshops, exhibitions, and panel discussions to foster community connections fueled by curiosity. despace is made possible through funding provided by the Tezos Foundation.
Hello 2023, and goodbye 2022! With the new year rush behind us, we’re proud to bring you an overview of a despace’s first year in this world. What a momentous year that was…
You want to hear about the year in numbers, you say?
- 1 community space 🏡
- 1 pop-up gallery space
- 36 events that bloomed after the lockdown 🌷
- 9 NFT exhibitions 🖼️
- 2.500+ programs’ and events’ attendees 🎫
- 1 small grants program 💰
- 13 grantees 🐰
- many partners, collaborators, and new & old friends 💙
The momentum was created throughout the last 12 months and we’re showcasing some of our community highlights below.
January — June
Before we got onto the events organisation, we were moving through ideation to execution to get you involved in Web3 and have a physical community space to help you navigate the complexities of blockchain.
BUIDL — co-creative workshop (18–19 February)
BUIDL was a workshop day for builders interested in developing blockchain based applications, expanding their knowledge, and exploring possible implementations of blockchain technology & NFTs.
Attendees co-created an open source Proof of Concept on the Tezos blockchain that was tested by Light Art Space (LAS), a Berlin based art foundation.
Web3 Grants Program: Down the Rabbit Hole Launch (5 April)
After months of deliberation, we were finally able to announce our Web3 small grants program, Down the Rabbit Hole.
Down The Rabbit Hole supports projects that utilize Tezos technology to develop and ideate new products, applications, and blockchain tools, while simultaneously raising awareness of Web3 utility functions through educational or informational activities.
To celebrate the announcement of this program and invite innovative thought leaders to apply to the program, despace hosted a panel discussion on the topic: “Where are we in Web3?”
This opening discussion opened the floor to explain the purpose, categories and benefits of the grants program and the vision to expand activity on the blockchain in tangible, unexpected ways.
To learn more about the Down The Rabbit program, click here, and to read more about the grantees, click here.
Vyking Meetup: Digital Fashion & Computer Vision (12 May)
Vyking organised an evening of connection, learning and sharing thoughts on the intersection of technology, creativity and fashion in despace.
A panel discussion included experts in the field of digital fashion & computer vision: Stephan Klimpke (Vyking), Marius Morhard (32Bit Badman), and Assaf Reeb (IVA). They shared their point of views and opinions on where digital fashion and computer vision are heading in the foreseeable future as Web3 technology gains traction within the fashion industry.
Into the Lab: NFT creations on Tezos (26 May)
Into the Lab was organised as a satellite event for the NFT Berlin conference. NFT Berlin is a non-profit that “provides an open, chain-agnostic platform for learning, exchanging ideas and sharing experiences” with a focus on art, culture, and technology.
Into the Lab had two main foci: an NFT round-table workshop led by Dr. Michael Straeubig (@crcdng), who introduced the audience the Hic et Nunc narrative called “Quo vadis, Hic et Nunc? A drama in 3 acts”, and a panel discussion surrounding the topic of how NFT platforms can empower artists led by Paul Schmidt (fxhash), Holly Wood (Rarible) and Raphaël de Courville (generative artist).
Symbiocene: A preview of Sonarmática by Tezos 2022 (07–10 June)
“Symbiocene: A preview of Sonarmática by Tezos 2022” was an artistic exploration of anthropocene epoch and the significance in holds in context to earth’s historical past and future.
For those who are new to the topic, geological timelines are typically classified by units of time that connect back to the earth’s layers and these divisions are classified into eons, eras, periods, epochs, and ages. Anthropocene is a term coined by Paul Crutzen and Eugene Stormer to mark the geologic chapter in time when mankind began to have an significant impact on earth’s climate and geological ecosystem.
The exhibition was hosted in dekabinett, despace’s pop-up gallery, as a preview for the “Sonarmática by Tezos” exhibition, which featured thematic work exploring the interpretations of 15 artists. It was held 16–18 June during the Sonar+D Barcelona 2022 festival.
Featured artists: Kelly Richardson, Sasha Stiles, Patrick Tresset, Ali M. Demirel
Tezos Open Day (25 June)
At the Tezos Open Day, visitors were able to connect with the TZ Connect team at despace in Berlin to ask questions, and learn about current projects, and opportunities related to NFTs, minting, smart contracts, DApps, and lastly hiring possibilities.
fxhash: bridging the gap (25 July–5 August 2022)
fxhash, an open platform for generative art on the Tezos blockchain, hosted in a collaboration with despace berlin an in-person exhibition — “bridging the gap”. The exhibition’s leitmotif was bridging the gap between artist and collector, traditional and new, enthusiasts and doubters, fxhash and the world.
This exhibition celebrated generative art and the power of the connection that it embodies. It showcased the work of 36 digital artists and spanned a wide variety of art published on fxhash, bringing digital art into the physical space of dekabinett.
Featured artists: erik swahn, anna lucia, landlines, presstubel, dmarchi, abstractement x tender, inconvergent, ciphrd, rudxane, twistie, lisa orth, softd0t, comborandom, s_r_r_z_, orr kislev, pablo alpe, harry isaac, needleundernail, amy goodchild, sam tsao, ertdfgcvb, matt ebb, flight404, agoston nagy, hevey, frederik vanhoutte, eric andwer, pepe__xyz, alt+esc, wwatkns, ippsketch, kim asendorf, random_combo, disruptedstar, toxi
4 screens (9–19 August)
4 screens was a pop-up digital art exhibition that celebrated a diverse range of art on Tezos.
dekabinett hosted the first iteration, in which four different curators from across the globe presented their selection of the digital art.
Screen 01, called “The third dimension” was curated by Michelle Brown (aka The Bad Lament). The Bad Lament is an Australian based new media artist focused on both virtual and augmented reality as well as creating storytelling experiences in the digital space. Her screen showcased NFTs that provide a new creative platform for digital artists, including those experimenting with 3D, interactivity, along with virtual and augmented reality artworks.
Screen 02, “World-sensing” was curated by Taís Koshino, a Brazilian visual artist, researcher, and curator. “It’s vital to make it visible, horizontalize the senses, trace dispersion routes, build possible structures to exist. We rescue technologies and knowledge, manufacture possibilities, create visualities. from within our singular world-sensing, we enunciate and propose a way to transform.” — Tais mentioned in her curatorial statement.
Screen 03, curated by Viola Lukács, “NFT deb generative dimensions” previewed the collection of human/data-engineered artworks that took aim at the avian migration crisis, as Europe’s most iconic migratory bird species are disappearing like never before. Viola Lukács is a Berlin-based curator and writer using art to unravel human and non-human entanglements.
Screen 04, named “Danger! NFTs! Preview 2” was put together by the fourth curator of the exhibition — @crcdng, a transdisciplinary theorist and practitioner with a focus on systems theory, playful design, and posthuman positions. His selection aimed to re-focus moving away from generative art, pfps or early crypto artists, and shifting towards something a newer, novel iteration of generative art to evoke the 5 senses. It presented a number of fresh, wild and dangerous voices: the nightmarish humor of bloody halley.
Noah Pred — Eschatons (25–26 August)
despace presented a pop-up exhibition of audio-visual artist Noah Pred, a recipient of our Down the Rabbit Hole grants program.
The exhibition in despace was based on his interactive installation for Refraction Festival at NFT.NYC last June, where participants in the original installation of Eschatonality, for Refraction Festival at NFT.NYC in June 2022, were able to interact with it by simply posting a tweet including the title: eschatonality.
The result, presented on exhibition for the first time, was a collection of 50 unique audio-visual expressions of eschatonality.
The Shape of Things to Come (7–9 September)
A 4-channel installation featured the works of VanTa and Josef Pelz, as they unlocked new facets of our minds by questioning our cultural understanding of objects.
With the new world of digital technology, our traditional understanding of what objects are and how they connect back to our culture is changing rapidly. What possibilities appear as a result of questioning the idea of object-to-culture we’ve known previously while refocusing our vantage point to include technologies that surround us?
The installation took place in dekabinett — despace’s pop-up space in Berlin, from September 7 until September 9.
Tezos Tuesday Brunch (13 September)
The event was organised at despace during Berlin Blockchain Week to introduce blockchain enthusiasts to Tezos.
The day consisted of brunch, talks, community networking, panel discussion and casual co-working to foster a sense of belonging in the physical world within a digitally based community.
Tezos Berlin Art Week (13–25 September)
Two weeks of Tezos’ creations were showcased across multiple channels, tools, and spaces. Tezos Berlin Art Week was presented by despace berlin, VerticalCrypto Art, Refraction, Operator, and fxhash to build awareness and highlight the strengths of the Tezos ecosystem to reach an untapped market of potential Tezos creators during Berlin Art Week.
In Touch: Art in the Age of Post-NFTism (13–25 September)
An international group exhibition featured 20 artists who are at the forefront of today’s crypto and generative art movements on Tezos. This exhibition was curated by Micol Ap and Anika Meier, and presented by VerticalCrypto Art in collaboration with despace berlin.
Featured artists: Agoria, Kim Asendorf, Loren Bednar, Orfhlaith Egan, Anna Carreras, Brendan Dawes, Linda Dounia, Leander Herzog, Ismahelio, Andy Kassier, Martina Menegon, Claudia Pawlak, Andreas Rau, Manuel Rossner, Rudxane, Ivona Tau, Melissa Wiederrecht, Zancan.
Privacy Collection with Operator (15 September)
In this talk, Lumen Prize-winning artist duo Ania Catherine and Dejha Ti, known as Operator, spoke about their approach to performance and experiential art on the blockchain, as illustrated through their Privacy Collection — with a specific focus on Privacy Portraits created on Tezos.
Privacy Portraits are anonymized collector portraits created live through a durational performance installation during Proof of People in London (July 2022).
PREVIEW: Surveyors of Magic by Refraction DAO (15–18 September)
Bringing together an array of international artists within Refraction’s community on Tezos, the preview of Surveyors of Magic described the magic of memories, dreams, and experiences refracted through the digital lens. This pop-up preview gave viewers a taste of what was to come in the full exhibit in October.
Curated by Tabitha Swanson and interlaced into the playful exhibition installation of Craig Barrow, the featured artworks from chepertom, digitalcoleman, and hypereikon invited the viewer to step into the world of each artist and explore for themselves.
Contemporary Art vs. Crypto Art? (17 September)
Moderated by Anika Meier, the conversation was held between Sarah Friend (Artist), Manuel Rossner (Artist), Micol Ap (VerticalCrypto Art) and Diane Drubay (Tezos) discussing how the two art world merge together.
MusicTech Meetup & Web3 ideation workshop (6 & 8 October)
MusicTech Germany and despace organised a Web3 music ideation workshop to bring people from different areas of the music and tech scenes together for a day at despace.
Attendees formed teams to create novel concepts for useful products, services or applications in the Web3 music ecosystem all related to practical utility within the music/audio industry, and the winning concept won the Down the Rabbit Hole grant worth 5.000 EUR. Wow!
Surveyors of Magic (13–20 October)
Refraction x Tezos x Infinite Objects presented ‘Surveyors of Magic’ at despace berlin, curated by Tabitha Swanson and designed by Craig Barrow.
By bringing together an array of international artists within Refraction’s community, this exhibition described the magic of memories, dreams, and experiences refracted through the digital lens.
This exhibit was previewed in September and was anchored with a full exhibition and event activations in October.
Featured visual pieces by: Anya Asano, Auriea Harvey, Chepertom, Coco Magnusson, digitalcoleman, Fizz Pop, hypereikon, Kazuhiro Aihara, p1xelfool, Rick Silva, Tabitha Swanson, Teebs, W3irDtrip, Zach Lieberman.
Tezos Tuesday (8 November)
This was the launch of our Tezos Tuesday series of the events where those curious about Tezos could drop by, meet the team, review their code, use the weekly meetings for the accountability purpose, or simply learn more about the blockchain.
Tezos minting workshop with crcdng (10 November)
This was a hands-on workshop focused on artists that are absolute beginners of minting their art on Tezos. The attendees gained a basic understanding of NFTs, learned how to create a digital wallet, discovered how to connect the wallet to the NFT platform, and minted their very first NFT. The workshop was facilitated by crcdng.
Photography and NFTs with Roger Ballen (18 November)
despace berlin, Tezos, and misa.art presented “Photography and NFTs with Roger Ballen: Photography in the Post-Digital Age“ — an evening with Roger Ballen and voices from the photography scene and Tezos community.
The future of photography was discussed while learning from the past by looking more closely at the work and career of Roger Ballen, one of the most important and original art photographers working today.
Panelists were Roger Ballen (Photographer), Marina Paulenka (Director of Exhibitions for Fotografiska Berlin), and Daniel Gebhart de Koekkoek (Photographer). The panel was moderated by Anika Meier, Writer and Curator.
Game On! series of the events
despace launched a series of gaming events, with a focus on bringing awareness and insights into the Web3 and Tezos for the Berlin gaming community.
Into the Unknown (23–24 November)
“Into the Unknown” showcased the intersection of technology in the physical realm as seen by 10 Berlin-based artists. The artists experimented with different mediums and processes. Paint, pencil, collage, and watercolour were used as much as code, generative art, and digital illustration.
This exhibition was a collaboration between despace (Tezos), and NFT Club Berlin, to highlight 10 local NFT artists at the Next Block Expo on November 23–24.
Antti Pussinen, Barbara Pampin, Dr. Benton Banner, Klaus Jörres, Marcel Schwittlick, Maria Victoria Rodriguez, Mical Noelson, Orfhlaith Egan, Peer Kriesel, Sonia Gil
Empowering Artists Through Web3 (24 November)
“Empowering Artists Through Web3” was a panel discussion organised during the Next Block Expo in Berlin with NFT Club Berlin, where Dr. Michael Straeubig (crcdng) was moderating the conversation between Mical Neolson (Artist), Dr. Rebekka Revel (NFT Club) and Stefania Artusi (TZ Connect).
H.E.R. DAO holiday meetup (14 December)
despace supported the one year celebration of H.E.R. DAO, where they reminisced about the 2022 and presented the 2023 roadmap.
Thanks to everyone who made our 2022 as beautiful as it was — full of connections, conversations, collaboration, new ideas and friendships!