Cryptocurrencies Conceptualized by Artists and Their Work

The world of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology can be a daunting one to immerse yourself into. Connecting to, or even explaining, something as seemingly intangible as Bitcoin is a challenge for those learning about it for the first time.

The Crypto Art Gallery is a one day event focused on bringing together Bitcoin and other crypto-based paintings and designs from artists around the world. Valentina Picozzi, one of the artists whose work will be on display, hopes that her work can help bridge the gap between technologists and the general public.

First introduced to Bitcoin in 2012 by a friend active in the Bitcoin community, Valentina became fascinated and later founded Satoshi Gallery in 2016. Through its images, art and clothing, Satoshi Gallery’s goal is to make cryptocurrencies easier to understand and more approachable, something that sparks curiosity.

Bitcoin is not just a currency, currency is just the first app.”

“You can’t go and ask people “have you ever heard about this amazing peer-to-peer electronic cash system with no trusted third parties?” Because for the average person, of course they haven’t,” said Valentina.

It is for this reason that the Italian London-based artist has split her art project into two main themes. The first being an analysis of the current financial situation, the banking system and the currency war. The second theme goes deeper, focusing on what’s behind cryptocurrencies, the culture, history and important anecdotes.

“If you don’t understand the current financial situation and the problems we’re facing, how could you be open minded and willing to understand this new technology, this technology that has the power to overcome some of these issues?” she asked.

© Valentina Picozzi, Satoshi Nakamoto’s quote, 2016

Adam Rizvi, the host and organizer of the Crypto Art Gallery, was inspired after reading about some of the artwork that was emerging, created to visualize cryptocurrencies. “I started to research artists producing work focused on cryptocurrencies and was amazed by the artwork I saw,” he said. “I’m very excited to see these original oil paintings in their true glory that I, and everyone else online, have only been able to view from the other side of a laptop screen.”

For Valentina, art has always been used as a way to describe and depict historical revolutions and she thinks a technological revolution deserves the same treatment.

“The majority of artists who paint about crypto take a purely visual approach, using brush strokes and then adding the Bitcoin, Ethereum or Monero logo in the painting,” said Valentina. “There’s so much more to talk about and paint about than just the logos of these cryptocurrencies.”

“Images create culture. Culture shapes values. Values determine the future.”

Looking ahead, both Valentina and Adam see the synergy between art and cryptocurrencies going much beyond one simply expressing the other.

“I do think we will use blockchain technology to establish provenance of artwork,” she said. “Today the provenance of a piece of art is fragile. Artists, owners and galleries will all be sharing information to trace the journey of artwork on blockchain related applications.”

“I think this relationship has emerged because blockchain technology at its core is thinking outside the box, much like a lot of artists do,” said Adam. “Seeing anything through the eyes of artists gives us an amazing perspective.”

© Valentina Picozzi, I am one, 2017 and I am done, 2017

A selection of Valentina’s prints and original oil paintings will be for sale at the event alongside other artists’ work. For more information about the Crypto Art Gallery or for tickets, visit http://cryptoartgallery.org/. To see more of Valentina’s work and Satoshi Gallery, visit http://www.satoshigallery.com/.