Pussy Riot Talk NFTs Ahead of Major Graffiti Queens Expo

"Proceeds are going to be split between a female shelter for victims of domestic violence based in Russia and Pussy Riot's activist art," founder Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, AKA Nadya Tolokno, told Crypto Briefing.

Shutterstock image by Brenda Leap

Key Takeaways

  • On Apr. 3, Graffiti Queens will launch one of the largest NFT expos on Decentraland.
  • Over 200 digital artists are to attend, present, and sell their artworks.
  • Newcomers to the NFT space, Pussy Riot will also be joining the expo.

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The upcoming Graffiti Queens expo welcomes some of the NFT space’s foremost digital artists. It also ushers in some new faces, like the infamous art collective Pussy Riot.

Introducing World’s Largest NFT Show

The expo is hosted by the Graffiti Kings organization, organized by founder and head artist Darren Cullen and the expo’s curator Crypto Yuna at the helm. The event takes place in Decentraland and features approximately 200 digital artists.

Cullen described Yuna as an “OG crypto artist, one of the first women involved in the trash art movement, [and] helped found WOCA (women of crypto art foundation).”

Cullen was excited to kickstart the event, voicing the belief that “physical artworks and art galleries will die just like vinyl records and record stores.”

“Graffiti Queens is an art show that is open to all female or identify-as-female artists no matter what platform they mint on. There are no fees or applications. There is no artist limit,” said Yuna. “Much like graffiti, no rules — except needing an Open Sea link for the work.”

Yuna became aware of NFTs in 2019, immediately recognizing the potential.

“The technology is amazing for artists because you can’t be forged. It can be traced back directly to your wallet forever on a blockchain. No mater who owns it or where it goes, the original creator can’t be changed.”

This sounds contradictory to the recent instances of IP theft taking place on NFT marketplaces, but there’s truth to it.

As Yuna explains, “if you want to prove it’s your work and you did it first, it’s all there on-chain. It’s irrefutable. This means I no longer have to send cease and desist notices and jump through hoops like I did when people on Amazon were falsely selling my work.”

The curator gathered the work of many artists for the show, including Angie Taylor and Kitty Bast.

Yuna says NFTs will become a common household term. As one of the original members of crypto’s Trash Art movement, she is known for her foresight in the crypto industry.

Trash Art began when NFT artists began challenging the definition of art, resulting in bans from multiple platforms and a battle for self-determination against wealthy market stakeholders.

“The what is art? question came into play,” said Yuna. “We were a rebel band of misfits that laugh when we were told ‘no.’ We minted trash cans and anything else we wanted to prove a point.”

Source: Artist Robness used animation tools to challenge critics of the burgeoning crypto art movement.

Pussy Riot Raise Money for Domestic Violence Victims

The biggest name attached to the expo is Pussy Riot, a feminist punk movement and artist collective that saw two founding members jailed and sent to forced labor camps in Russia in 2012.

Founder Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, AKA Nadya Tolokno, spent two years in a Russian prison after being charged with “hooliganism” for Pussy Riot’s “Punk Prayer” performance. Set in Moscow’s Cathedral of Christ the Savior, the performance criticized the Orthodox Church’s support of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Tolokno spoke with Crypto Briefing about her time in prison and how that impacted her outlook on life before moving on to the direction her art has taken.

Tolokno became involved with Graffiti Queens by messaging them on Twitter about the show, saying that the experience has been empowering.

Pussy Riot minted a series of four NFTs extracted from a music video to the song Panic Attack, which was filmed using 106 different cameras to capture Tolokno’s holographic image.

The first installment, Terrestrial Paradise, sold for 100 ETH on Mar. 14, while Slaughtered Clones sold for 13.4 ETH.

The second piece featured a “toxic factory where human female clones are being reproduced for consumption,” said Tolokno, telling Crypto Briefing the piece is “about how environmental issues are connected with mental health.”

“We’re facing global issues that have to be solved globally and we have to spark conversations, and that’s why we made this piece. Proceeds are going to be split between a female shelter for victims of domestic violence based in Russia and Pussy Riot’s activist art.”

Tolokno added that she was “overwhelmed with gratitude” regarding the sale of her recent piece, mentioning the buyer as well as the crypto art community as a whole. The third and fourth installments, Rivers of Blood and Doomsday Boss Fight, will go for auction on Mar. 27 and Apr. 03 respectively.

The Graffiti Queens show itself will take place on the Decentraland platform on Apr. 3, featuring artwork from Pussy Riot, Angie Taylor, Crypto Yuna, and over 200 other artists known for their work both inside and outside the crypto space.

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