Aristocratic Academia operates at the low end of the cultural production. It openly assigns art to be of low value due to the speed of production (longer is better), lack of formal training or implied lack of skill instead of subjectivity. While isolation of elements of one artwork can be a great look into detail. One needs to zoom out into a Betrachtung which can be a challenge in the digital age.
Artificial Scarcity Vs. Real Scarcity in Art
All art made that has anything to do with a cryptographic token that is created in a limited manner is really scarce. It doesn’t matter if it is a so-called NFT (Non Fungible Token) or a token with an issuance of 500000000 that is limited. There are only X amount of these things. The amount of the particular token is -part- of the artwork itself. It is not a separate representation of it, but -part- of it. It is part of a Gesamtkunstwerk.
„ A fanatical trend of producing thousands of remixed illustrations of the infamous Pepe the Frog meme, cryptographically registered to appear artificially scarce, „ -Max Dovey — MUST WE ALL BECOME MEME ARTISTS?
No, the blockchain rarepepes do not appear artificially scarce (get it ARTificially scarce) but they are -scarce- period full stop. The token is not separate from the visual artwork as they are one in part of a unifying concept and vision of the artist, the creator. This is the molding of many elements together. In this way this is the hyper modern Gesamtkunstwerk. Of course you can take a picture of a rarepepe, you can take a picture of Banksy street art just like all the hipsters using google GPS to wonder with their heads down through Shoreditch and take the much-needed selfie in front of a now, super edgy and scarce Banksy, as there is only one of each but oh so many Instagram pictures of them indeed. Are Banksy´s artificially scarce? Why not wheat paste many of the same Banksy?
Is the Mona Lisa a practice in Artifical Scarcity?
There is only one Mona Lisa. This is an attempt of the artist to create artificial scarcity. Sounds legit right? There is only one, why not just make two? Was the artist trying to limit access to culture by making only one? There is only one but many pictures of the one, but is it scarce or artificially scarce? The artist had the intent of making one and only one.
“The use of blockchain to create originals, editions and inject scarcity into the circulation of digital media contradicts the structural properties of conventional web protocols and meme culture that thrive on the copyleft remix culture of the early web.” Max Dovey — MUST WE ALL BECOME MEME ARTISTS?
No, it is creating a meme of how ridiculous extreme artificial scarcity maximalists are. The tools that are used to create the blockchain part of the artworks are open source and can themselves be remixed into whatever your vision is. This includes creating a far left Stalinist blockchain with forced taxes of the addresses holding the most value or economic experiments in demurrage.
The use of blockchain, in this case, is in itself the next level of remix culture. Any call to limit the use of a tool in a particular way, in particular when the tools are new, and being experimented with can be interpreted to a call to ideological purity in a field where we just started. This type of intellectual activism is better expressed through art and example itself.
Take action, tokenize and create a kingdom of artificially fair demurrage and neverending chains of value transfer for each aftermarket purchase, let the speculators suffer and the artists reign over them. Let us create a fair marketplace in which we all must not become meme artists (God forbid!). Free us from the shackles of memetics and deliver us from the evils of blockchains.
Let us not limit artwork due to appeals to political activist puritan maximalism but instead embrace free use of tools and meritocracy.
I have tokenzied this article in order to make it ARTificialy Scarce, but is it?
FIRST EVER TOKENIZED ARTICLE