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Want to flaunt your NFT art collection? Here are 10 ways to flex

Collectors and galleries are ramping up their NFT art collections. And with the popularity of NFTs, artists are also moving into the space at a breakneck speed.

Galleries in particular, who understandably may have been skittish about digital art, are playing a bit of catch up as things in the space have been moving quickly.

Platforms are seeing exponential growth in the number of signups and works placed for sale. One interesting trend has been the rise of the artist-collector.

The sense of community in the NFT space is a wonderful development that has led to artists using a portion of their funds to support each other by buying and collecting each other’s art. 

The industry has also seen auctions by Sotheby’s and Christie’s as well as falling crypto prices that may lower the barrier to entry for new collectors.

But as the collector base increases, the question of displaying crypto and digital art is being brought to the forefront.  Indeed, it is one of the first questions I am asked when discussing NFTs with curious newbies.

While there are platforms that exist to showcase your NFT collection online, we at The BlkChain have done some digging to provide a resource for aspiring and existing collectors who want to show off their NFT art.

Here’s what we found. Find more ways to amplify your NFT art collection by going to BLK Chain (Click Here)

Online NFT art galleries

1. Showtime 

Showtime is a web-based platform that bills itself as Instagram for NFTs. Sign up, connect your wallet, and Showtime will find works associated with your wallet and display them on your very own page. 

The platform recently added the ability to like, follow and comment on works of others, as well as a Facebook-like cover photo feature. Users can discover new artists and can see trending works as well.

2. OnCyber 

This slick virtual online gallery allows users to choose the setting of their choice from 3 available, to display works registered to their wallet on the blockchain.

Once your art is displayed, you can arrange them within the space and share the link with others to peruse at their leisure. The site creates a virtual gallery featuring your very own collections of NFTs and allows users to move about at will in the space. Works well on mobile, too.

3. ThisisAito 

Prolific collector and one of the best-known names in NFTs recently launched their very own NFT gallery platform. Sign up is like the others, as simple as connecting your wallet and showing off pieces that you own.

Given Aito’s reputation as a collector, the site has seen creators flock to the site in hopes that it will get them noticed. But the interface is simple and easy to use. Recently, the site has added a curation feature that allows users to curate works they do not own. 

4. Flawnt 

Currently, in Alpha, this online showcase behaves like the others and displays pretty much anything associated with the selected address, including ENS names.

Users can choose to sort or hide specific assets on their page. As of this writing, the platform was a bit buggy so I’m guessing that they are still working out some kinks and will roll out features incrementally.


Brought to you by colorful Mavericks owner and investor Mark Cuban, the site is pretty bare but has evolved over the past few weeks.

Lazy allows you to show off your NFTs and apparently acts as a marketplace, though you’ll have to click-through to OpenSea to make purchases it appears. The items in your wallet will sit on a stark white page with buttons that allow you to pin or sell.

Physical Frames for your most loved NFTs

In addition to the web-based platforms, there is also a new crop of physical frames that collectors and galleries are using to display NFT and crypto art. Remember the frames from a few years ago that would sit on your desk and cycle through your family photos?

Well, these aren’t that, but the idea is similar. These are aesthetically gorgeous pieces of hardware and custom software that allow collectors and galleries to display hi-resolution work in their home, business, or gallery.

1. Qonos 

Targeted specifically toward collectors, the Qonos bills itself as the world’s first custom digital frame and platform for NFT art collectors. The digital frame comes in two sizes; a 24-inch and a 17.4-inch.

The larger frame will run you a cool $1499 and the smaller 17.4 inches comes in at just under $1000. Owners of the frame will have access to over $500m worth of NFTs and the first batch, which were released in March of this year, sold out in 24 hours.

Find more ways to amplify your NFT art collection by going to BLK Chain (Click Here)

Spudds McKenzie endlessly creates through genuine energy

For those that are visual learners, you have tuned in to the epicenter of Kulture. Our goal is to satiate your thirst for knowledge, awareness, and most importantly show before we tell. Spudds McKenzie, Big Heads designer and multifaceted superstar, is the topic of conversation today.

Photography sits atop the throne as the most pivotal medium for describing a scene without using any words. Without further wording, here is the interview that took place between Spudds McKenzie and the Wordsmith.

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Big heads have become brand entity #1 for Spudds McKenzie (Credit: @kivenchy)

Part of getting my craft in order was the pressure of waking up every day to go film another artist in a whole ‘nother city and it really pushed me.

Spudds McKenzie

Spudds McKenzie hones his craft through shock, awe and differentiation

Kulture Hub: It’s so important to possess a differentiating factor like this big heads thing. What was the first time that you conceptualized using the big heads?

Spudds McKenzie: My friend & I were watching a Ludacris video and thought wouldn’t it be great to start this era again? So I called up DC Young Fly for a favor. When I first moved to Atlanta he lived down the street from me.

I knew this idea would spread like wildfire because he’s animated with a great following and there was a lot of creativity behind it. Big heads display expressional personality traits. Creativity can get you in the room with anybody. It’s just how you go about it.

KH: Has the sports memorabilia platform FatHeads inspired you at all?

SM: They inspire me a lot. When FatHeads noticed how this idea sparked back up they put their foot back on it heavy on social media and were like – I need parts. It’s just a cycle effect and I’m here for it.

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Spudds started from the ground level with humility (via @kivenchy)

Creatives are not meant to conform

KH: I saw you said that you have fast and distorted brain wavelengths. Can you tell us more about that and how it contributes to your work?

SM: Some days, I won’t be able to get to sleep so I’ll just get up and start creating. Basically, how it works is it’s like an itch. I can’t scratch it until I really properly do it right.

Sometimes it could be relief from waking up from a dream where I will remember my journey step-by-step and wake up just to create. Things like that move me and bring me closer to other people that think like me.

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Spudds McKenzie exists as a multifaceted multiversed & versatile talent (Credit: @kivenchy)

Spudds McKenzie speaks to the importance of magnifying your abilities and turning heads

KH: Could you give us some keys to brand development for some people who are just beginning?

SM: Shock value. Don’t do something crazy for clout. Do something that stands out so much that people have no other choice but to look. And it doesn’t always have to be digital. Stay tight on your brand as far as promoting it. Get involved, host events, mixers, live meetups.

Anything I can get my hands on as far as creativity that’s where Spudds McKenzie and the brand itself became a big insight.

Spudds McKenzie

KH: What opportunities come about if you juggle multiple tasks?

SM: If you wear many hats branding is going to be easy for you because you’re using each and every one of those hats in that house to market. One way or another, you are going to cross brands! 

wiz khalifa and teen stars
Wiz Khalifa, Nick Jonas and Demi Lovato pose amongst professionals in a calm, candid setting (Credit: Spudds McKenzie)

The birth of Spudds McKenzie the artist

KH: So is it Spud or Spudds McKenzie? Take us through that – is that from the Bud Light dog?

SM: Spudds with an S. That name came about when I was around 11 or 12 years old. I got into a fight with some kids in my area and they hit me in the head with a bat that left a big knot on my head. People kept calling me Spudds because it looked like a huge potato grew out of the side of my head.

“After coming off tour I would head to Roswell Mill Waterfall in Georgia to try and take pictures of the simplest things from bumblebees to flowers, landscaping, water.”

Spudds McKenzie
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Spudds gets his braids twisted in a tranquil setting (via @jaywilsonmedia)

Spudds, ATL native, ignites the youth and provides fuel for those ready to blast off

KH: As a Baltimore to ATL native what do you think of Tyler Perry’s 300-acre soundscape and what might you do if you were able to touch that ground? 

SM: I love what he’s doing for the creative community. I love that he opened up his own world like Walt Disney. He created a whole home for actors to live on to create content 25/8.

Tyler Perry is a blueprint. I love what he does for the community and for people like us. I’ve never seen someone open up an entire 300 acre land just for sets. Nobody has done that other than Paramount in L.A. Tyler Perry the G.O.A.T. for that. Seriously.

KH: Do you have any advice for young creatives?

SM: Keep creating. There are no boundaries. Every rule is broken. Don’t think you have to follow everyone’s path or journey to be something. You can make your own lane.

I would suggest that everybody take the time to tap into any issues that may stop you from being creative. Take your time with things. Never stop believing. Never stop creating. 

rico nasty
Spudds & Rico Nasty steady in grit, grind & work mode (Credit: Spudds McKenzie)

KH: What do you have coming up?

SM: I have more music videos coming with Rico Nasty. I have a big announcement coming up for producers. All I’m going to say is that producer/label is about to be a thing for content creators. As far as another exhibit, that’s on the way as well.

Spudds Mckenzie is primed for even more

After starting with Archive Entertainment, Rich the Kid, Lil Uzi Vert, Playboi Carti, Don Cannon, DJ Drama & Dej Loaf in his early days, it is clear to say Spudds McKenzie has carved his own lane for himself to become the boss.

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Uzi poses in extraordinary fashion while on “Left Right” tour (Credit: Spudds McKenzie)

Ownership will always take precedence. Push yourself, branch out and never stop creating. #10K80

Gregory Siff created his own canvas with custom bat

If you were watching the Home Run Derby last week, you may have noticed that Pete Alonso had some pretty sick custom designs painted on his bat. The bat featured cerulean blue and pumpkin orange paint that faded into one another, with black icons all over it, and it thus made headlines. The artist behind this unique baseball bat, Gregory Siff, received a special acknowledgment from Pete Alonso during the broadcast on his way to the Met star’s second straight Home Run Derby title.

Gregory Siff is a talented artist, painter, fashion collaborator, and a huge Mets fan, who was given the opportunity to customize bats for his favorite team’s best hitter.

Pete Alonso’s Home Run Derby bat was not Gregory Siff’s first glimpse into baseball collaborations. He was invited by Topps to participate in Topps Project 2020 and Topps Project 70. Those projects were outlets for artists to customize their takes on existing cards.

We got a chance to catch up with Gregory Siff about his work, his life, and the opportunity of a lifetime he got to design the bat for Pete Alonso and the Home Run Derby.

gregory siff pete alonso bat
Gregory Siff-designed bats lined up (Photo by Andy Choi)

Gregory Siff’s bats

Kulture Hub: First things first, the bats are very cool. Are custom bats something you’ve been doing for a while, or is it still something you are relatively new to?

Gregory Siff: These are the first bats I’ve ever painted. It sort of found me. I’ve painted on a lot of different things in my career but it was a first. The opportunity came to me through Topps. I was part of Topps project 2020, where they gave artists the opportunity to give our takes on awesome, classic cards. Now I’ve been in contact with them ever since, they’ve been setting up some great opportunities for me.

KH: How did you get the opportunity to design custom bats for Pete Alonso? Was social media a factor? Did you know him personally beforehand?

GS: No I didn’t know him personally. What happened was Topps called me and told me that Pete Alonso was looking for an artist who really loves the Mets. They told me he saw my work and really liked it, and his agent really set things in motion. They told me that they wanted me to collaborate with him. At first, it was just gonna be like hoodies, t-shirts, and stuff.

But he actually commissioned me and asked me if I wanted to paint on these Dove Tail Bats he uses. They make some of the coolest bats, most beautiful bats I have ever seen, like sculptures made of wood. Needless to say, I said yes.

pete alonso home run derby bat
Gregory Siff holding his creation: Pete Alonso’s Home Run Derby-winning bat (Photo by Andy Choi)

I like to tell stories with my art using symbols and iconography, so that’s really what I wanted to do for Pete’s bat. I wanted to show the story of his career, his family, and his life on the bat. He really gave me creative freedom to do what I felt like. The rest is history, man.

Gregory Siff and Pete Alonso’s bat linkup

KH: Take me through the process, how many bats did you end up customizing for Pete? How many did he end up using? Were there first and second drafts?

GS: So the plan was to create 8 bats that I would give my all into, then Pete would pick his favorite bat to use during the derby. They told me “do whatever you wanna do!” We wanted him to have a variety of choices. I wanted him to get a feel for all of them and decide which one felt the best.

pete alonso home run derby bat
Gregory Siff-designed bats lined up (Photo by Andy Choi)

I made two test bats for him that would not be used for play, we needed to see how my paint would react with the wood and how it would react to striking balls. He ultimately decided on the blue and orange one with black lettering. He picked my favorite one! We have since decided to recreate the bat he used 100 times for a limited release, and we’re gonna send a portion of the proceeds to his charity.

gregory siff pete alonso bat
Gregory Siff’s designs (Photo by Andy Choi)

On top of everything, he got me the tickets to go to The Derby, so I really couldn’t be more grateful. I have done a few fashion projects, so I decided [to] paint a custom leather jacket for him as a way to thank you so much for the opportunity. The guy is a true champion and gentleman.

Baseball and art

KH: I can see from your Instagram that you are clearly a big Mets fan. Does it mean extra to you that you were able to design a bat for one of the Mets’ biggest stars?

GS: I’m a big-time Mets guy. Going back to when my dad owned one of the biggest catering halls in Brooklyn. When they won the World Series in 1986, they had a party there and I got to hang out with the players. The Mets have always been a part of my life. Pete is a really strong, committed player on, and off the field. I was so happy to be able to paint bats for a real gentleman.

I also want to shoutout his charity Homers For Heroes. He is the type of player like Clemente that wants to leave a mark on this world. I was just super excited and grateful to be paired up with my guy! It meant so much for me because I was doing this for the representation of my favorite team, but also, after getting to know Pete, it was equally as cool doing it for him since he’s such a good dude.

KH: Now, you have also designed a few baseball cards for Topps Project 2020 and Topps Project70, including Aaron Judge and Darryl Strawberry edits. What was the experience like putting your own designs on these established cards?

GS: The feeling of creating your own baseball card is like no other. When I was young, I had always wanted to cut up my cards, paint on them. Now in my studio, that part of my creative process! When Topps signed us on for Project 70, the idea was for us to take our favorite players and our favorite Topps silhouettes, and add something to the cards that nobody else can do but us.

I put a shoutout to my dad’s old catering hall on one of them. Really personal touches. I put my own story on their, and picked players that I felt had a sentimental meaning to me. People I grew up idolizing. Having Topps give you the creative freedom that let me see out my vision was the best! There is nothing better than having your true voice come through in a collaboration. It was awesome that Topps gave the artists the freedom.

Gregory Siff the artist

KH: Let’s talk a little bit about you as a creator. How long have you been making art? Was being an artist always your career goal?

GS: My first job was in the New York City Opera at Lincoln Center. I was in the boy’s chorus when I was around 12-13. First, I wanted to play for the New York Mets. But really my first aspiration was that I wanted to become an actor.

I was in musicals in high school, then started doing commercials after that. I moved to Los Angeles once I got involved with acting to pursue my dream. However, as I started to mature and get older, the work wasn’t there for me as much as before. I found art to be a response to that frustration.

I didn’t have to audition to make a painting, I would just make one, and it would satisfy me. I’d be the writer, director, and actor all at once through my paintings. That passion for art quickly took away my passion for acting and my wanting to become an actor.

KH: Do you feel like your experiences in other walks of life, such as being an aspiring actor, help shape your art?

GS: Definitely, yeah. The things that I’ve experienced in my life before were all gasoline to tell my story in my paintings. Everything that happens to me is reflected in my work and, simultaneously, everything that I create is a way to deal with the things in my life that inspired the art. I think the most memorable paintings come from the realest place.

Like Pete Alonso’s bat, an artist can always leave their mark

KH: What characteristics do you feel truly distinguish your work from others?

GS: I experienced this last night actually, when someone told me that they saw the bats and they knew that it was me. That was really cool! It’s the energy that an artist brings which cannot be duplicated. I bring my energy to each piece, then I go in there with my colors, and my symbols, and everything that makes my art mine.

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Gregory Siff sitting with his designed bat (Photo by Andy Choi)

Eventually, you get to a point where it doesn’t matter the medium that’s used, your voice will come through. You will figure out which tools sing your song the clearest. I feel like that’s what separates me, being that I approach everything with the same energy, the same heart, and the same voice. You get a little bit closer to finding out what distinguishes you every time you pick up the brush.

Gregory Siff’s inspiration

KH: You have tons of street art, graffiti-looking designs. You also have a lot of sophisticated doodles reminiscent of high school desk drawings. Were you the kind of student to make art during class? What do you think inspires your stylistic choices the most?

GS: I still look at my notes from my NYU classes where we are talking about these important literary epics and next to all my notes are just these drawings I did of characters and Greek gods. Next to those drawings are random designs and characters and logos.

It made me ask myself, “was I even paying attention?” The source of my inspiration is simply my everyday life. What I do, where I go, what I eat, what I see, who I meet. I’m inspired by everything.

I am inspired by the artists that have come before me, paving the way. My style can be acknowledged and accepted because of the work of artists like Keith Haring, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Andy Warhol, various New York artists.

My gratitude for being alive, my life, God, all inspire me, my paintings have a little bit of a prayer in them to say “thank you that I get to do this.” When life gives you thongs that are beautiful, or you have to be present for, you must take it and make what you will with it.

Advice and final thoughts for aspiring artists

KH: What advice do you have for aspiring artists who admire your work?

GS: The best advice that I can give is: Live it! When you go to sleep at night, close your eyes and dream it. See where you want to take it. Dream of your work on the side of the biggest building you can imagine. When you wake up, live it! Get to work. Do it because you love it! Create something everyday.

It doesn’t matter what it is that you create, just create something that you can leave behind. Make a mark on the world every day! Those things will stack up and bring you closer to yourself.

Think about where you are today, think about where you are going, but always appreciate today. Don’t let negative experiences deter you. There are no rules in art. Nobody can tell you you’re doing something wrong, because nobody knows how to paint like you!

KH: Any last things you want the people to know? Any closing thoughts?

GS: I just want to say thank you to Kulture Hub for always putting the artists forward. Every time I speak to you guys, every time you show up to my shows, you guys are so supportive. I think, as artists, we need that sometimes because we question everything.

We say “is this good? Will people like this?” But when you have friends like Kulture Hub that support what you do, and reassure you, it makes for a stronger more confident artist. Thank you for that!

For Gregory Siff and Pete Alonso, that bat will last a lifetime

What may not have come through from the interview is that Gregory is one of the friendliest people you could ever meet. He is talented, he is a workhorse, and he is deserving of the attention his art receives.

Pete Alonso could not have picked a more perfect man to design his bat for the Home Run Derby. Go support Gregory Siff by checking out his Instagram, and his website, where you can browse his work, shop, and contact his studio.

How Google lets us see the best street art the world has to offer

Street art is a complicated art form. For instance, it is illegal in most instances, yet it can be legal under certain circumstances. Its origins are unknown, but we do know it has been around since ancient civilizations. Luckily, due to the Google Art Project, lovers of art can safely surf the web for street art from all across the world and learn about art’s roots.

Even the name of ‘street art’ is controversial. Depending on who you ask, there is no such thing as street art, only ‘graffiti.‘ Many people believe that ‘graffiti’ is only ‘street art’ once certain criteria has been met, such as approval from property owners. Some people believe there is no ‘graffiti,’ and that all forms of so-called ‘graffiti’ are artforms to be appreciated.

The revolution of the world’s street art

People have used street art for centuries as a means to express grievances, make statements, and display their impressive artistic talents.

Over the past several years, artists such as Banksy and Shepard Fairey, have transitioned street art from a largely ignored art form into a more accepted, mainstream form of expression.

Whether or not this was the intention of popular street artists is unknown, but one thing is for sure, street art isn’t going anywhere.

Google Art Project

One of the greatest limitations of street art is that since it is almost exclusively done on something stationary like a building, the range of people that can view it is constricted.

It is true that people can use social media to share street art that they like. But where should you go to find new street art? Well, thanks to google, you can use a website to find street art all over the world. The website allows users to view online exhibitions and read artist stories.

Another amazing feature on the website is a built-in map tool that allows people to view street art with a click. The map also comes with a ‘surprise me’ button. Clicking on that button shows you a random piece of street art from the numerous in their collection.

When you click on any given piece, you will be shown the art, the location, and the name of the artist/project the art belongs to (if applicable).

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Screenshot of surfing the Google Art Project

Perhaps the coolest aspect of the website is the virtual audio tour feature. This feature allows you to take a guided tour through street-art-heavy neighborhoods using the power of Google Earth.

These guided tours are provided by various non-profit organizations devoted to preserving and displaying street art. There are currently 6 virtual tours that you can take any time you feel like it. The voiceover is also available in several different languages.

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Screenshot of Artscape 2014

Get lost in the world of street art

If you are a fan of street art, or simply looking for an interesting way to pass the time, we highly recommend giving this website a visit.

Come get lost in the vibrant, fascinating, and seemingly endless world of street art.

MiraQle’s pop-up NFT gallery attracts Randi Zuckerberg to VIP show

NFTs are undoubtedly the new hottest trend in the crypto world. They’ve become so popular that industry leaders from across the globe including Jack Dorsey and Elon Musk have pledged for them.

Now, in a recent development, Randi Zuckerberg, Facebook’s former CMO, attended a VIP NFT Gallery hosted by MiraQle Project.

MiraQle Project, the issuer of MQL coin, recently held a VIP NFT showcase for the launch of 15 entertainment NFT content pieces. This invite-only event was held at Itaewon BOHYEMIAHN gallery and displayed several limited edition art pieces.

Randi Zuckerberg was one of the prime invites and she attended the event as the non-executive director of the KOSDAQ-listed company isMedia, following its recent partnership with MiraQle for an NFT marketplace. 

Being a tech enthusiast, Zuckerberg seemed to have thoroughly enjoyed the NFT showcase.

Speaking at the event she said, “MiraQle’s NFT artworks are in a different level of artistry from other existing NFT contents, and the technology to implement vibrant visuals, sounds, and dynamic movements are great. I’ve never seen such content. It is the best.”

She also explained that she was extremely excited to launch “an SPV (Special Purpose Vehicle) focused on the future of what live entertainment would look like in this hybrid world where new technologies such as blockchain, NFTs, and “cryptocurrencies” will ameliorate the experience for fans and consumers.”

The MiraQle project team honored Ms. Zuckerberg for her visit by gifting her with specially curated NFT artworks. She then took to her social media to announce that she was thrilled to be meeting “forward-thinking” Korean entrepreneurs who were working on blockchain technology. 

This NFT showcase is a part of MiraQle’s larger picture of decentralizing the entertainment sphere by bringing fans and artists on a level playing field. Several NFTs for music enthusiasts around the world were displayed in the event and images of top global artists were featured. 

Decentralizing the Music and Entertainment Industry  

The entertainment industry ever since its inception was almost always opaque. Industry tycoons have had full control over funding, distributing, and licensing content.

Fans had no choice but to accept the content churned out by these tycoons. But, with the rise of the internet came platforms like YouTube, Tiktok, and Instagram that allowed everyone to enjoy diversified content. 

Now, with the advent of blockchain technology, we’re finally at a stage where fans and creators can be on level playing fields. Fans can choose their stars and stars can be one step closer to actively interacting with their fans. Working towards this very goal is the MiraQle Project. 

MiraQle Project envisions the decentralization of the entertainment sphere, especially the music industry to create a fan-centric ecosystem.

It claims to consist of a collection of innovative platforms dubbed FanPick, DreamX, MusicQ, and EnterPlus that handle the planning, production, distribution, and consumption of content. 

Fans can participate directly in the planning stage such as the album concept and collaboration artists by voting on FanPick.

Once selected, their results will be produced into an album through the DreamX project. MiraQle has partnered with global partners like Tencent Music Entertainment and 7SIX9 Entertainment to produce groundbreaking music collaborations.

Fans will not only realize their dream album but also will have the opportunity to purchase their favorite artists’ NFT (Non-Fungible Token) artworks and merchandise.

These celebrity goods along with concert tickets will be purchasable through the EnterPlus app. Lastly, a social music service app called ‘MusicQ’ is a mixture of music streaming and social networking app. It encourages playlist sharing and the active engagement of artists and fans.

Through these four platforms of the MiraQle project ecosystem, fans can change the market dynamics of the entertainment sphere and become the center of the industry.

Why the NFT Showcase? 

Featuring various NFTs from across the globe, MiraQle’s recent NFT showcase was a good point of departure to introduce this project to a wider population out there.

Through showcasing some amazing limited-edition artworks and bringing in industry leaders like Randi Zuckerberg, MiraQle might have managed to garner just the right kind of attention to propel its further growth. 


Atomik is the Miami-based graffiti artist leaving his mark

While traveling in Miami in mid-June, I visited the Wynwood district. What I would come to see was graffiti art that piqued my interest and captivated my attention. Among the greatest art present was that of Atomik, the Miami-based graffiti artist leaving his mark on the city and world.

Before colorful murals, graffiti museums, art galleries, and chic boutiques coming in, Wynwood was in fact a struggling working-class neighborhood with burgeoning crime and riots in the 80s.

Walking down the streets in Wynwood, I saw different kinds of graffiti. Each piece emanated a strong personality of its creator.

One piece stood out; a bright orange graffiti instantly caught my attention. I couldn’t stop thinking about the adorable orange head, the cartoony eyes, the exaggerated smile with a chipped tooth, and even the stem popping out at the top of its head.

The neighborhood has greatly changed over the past decades. As the Design District to the north became insanely expensive, art crowd and developers were attracted to Wynwood’s lower rents and ample warehouses. That was when the gentrification began. The incoming talented artists have transformed Wynwood into a newly rising creative community.

The funny-looking smiling orange character was omnipresent in Miami. I later learned that it was local graffiti artist Atomik’s work.

Image via Wynwood Miami

Atomik, the Miami-based graffiti artist

miami-based graffiti artist atomik
Image via Voyage MIA.

Hailing from a graphic design background, Atomik is a huge influence in the Miami art scene.

Atomik’s real name is Adam Paul Vargas. He was born in 1981 and grew up in South Florida’s suburban Kendall neighborhood in Miami-Dade County.

Atomik has shown tremendous interest in graffiti art since a young age. The Miami-based graffiti artist’s first graffiti was during elementary school, during which he used the tag name APV, initials to his full name.

Throughout middle school and high school, Atomik continued to practice graffiti and has since left his mark everywhere in the city. At age 15, a friend gave him the tag name, Atom. He adapted the name to Atomik two years later.

In 2003, Atomik joined Miami Style Gods (MSG), a graffiti crew founded in the early 90s. He and some friends established a new crew, 28, two years later. 28 is a nod to Miami-Dade County’s police dispatch code for vandalism.

Origin of the iconic orange character

miami-based graffiti artist
PHOTO CRED: The Orange Bowl.

The idea of the orange character came from the Miami Orange Bowl. The original design resembled very much to the 1989 version of the Orange Bowl mascot, Obie.

The Orange Bowl has always had a special place in Atomik’s heart. To Atomik, it was a sacred place for Miami football. He used to go to football games and other events there before the landmark was demolished in 2008. Painting the orange character out in the public was the artist’s way to memorize the absent architecture.

His open devotion to the painting of the orange character, however, did not receive good response from The Orange Bowl Committee. The organization sent the artist a cease-and-desist order to stop using the Obie in his arts. Instead of giving up the design, however, Atomik made a couple adaptations.

The orange is still there, but its crown is replaced with a stem, a teardrop is placed on the side of its face. Its big smile, additionally, is accentuated more with a later added chipped tooth. Meanwhile, Obie’s original nose-to lip connection and Pacman eyes remain.

The orange is now Atomik’s trademark and style. Many people can relate to the orange not only because it is a signature mascot of Florida, but also because it reminds them of their memories and experiences with the Orange Bowl.

The legend of the Miami graffiti artist continues

Atomik’s art has accumulated considerable recognitions from both the art community and the public throughout the years. However, it was in 2012 that his work has been made ‘legit’ and professionally recognized.

During the time, Atomik was asked to create a mural with the words ‘Welcome you to Little Havana’ on Calle Ocho. It was a big mural that featured dominos and other symbols of the neighborhood.

The representative Cuban cigars, however, were absent. The program received sponsorship from Preferred Care Partners, Medica HealthCare Plans and AARP Medicare Plans from UnitedHealthcare.

‘Welcome You To Little Havana.’ PHOTO CRED: Jolene Gonzalez.

It’s the 24th year this year since Atomik first started doing spray can art. Over the past two decades, he travelled to Chile, Peru, Colombia, Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, Holland, Germany, Italy, Spain, England, Australia, Korea, Thailand, and so on. His signature orange character, too, travelled along with him and found its place in those locations.

Travel generates creativity and motivation

It could be hard to be creative in Miami sometimes, as the artist has been painting there for over two decades. Therefore, he would travel to different cities and countries. In new places, he gains inspirations again and spreads his work.

As he comments in an interview with Juxtapoz, “Traveling charges my creativity and motivates me to paint once I return.”

Traveling opens up a lot of doors and opportunities for him. Mobility influences the delivery of his art and application.

With repetition comes perfection

Does Atomik ever get tired of painting the orange over and over? Maybe.

Image via Miami Niche.

To the artist, the repetition can get boring from time to time, but it is an addiction to him. Through repeatedly producing the same subject, he refines his artistic skill and style.

What will Atomik impress the world with next time? A vinyl toy or a new collaboration with brands of the orange? Maybe when you travel to a new place next time, you will run into the artist and be fortunate enough to witness the birth of another signature orange character!

Virtual graffiti artist Felipe Pantone sets out to unlock mysteries

Felipe Pantone discovered his magnitude through art and it is quite exquisite. Formerly known as graffiti artist “PANT1,” the virtual artist has transformed himself into one of the most elite international creators. 

Start local and conquer global. Felipe serves as a true testament to free will, trial and error, and unlocking the various mysteries that life provides. 

virtual graffiti artist
Pantone earned his Fine Arts degree in Valencia, Spain (Via DCIM)

His propensity for the unbeknownst truly separates him and creates vivid cityscapes that stretch the boundaries of art. 

His incredible signature motifs appear to be enormous and simply put – it is because they are huge in weight and break the scale with impact.

Felipe Pantone is changing up the genre

There are hardly any words to describe these prisms of neon gradients with geometric patterns and optical jagged grids. The pieces elicit mesmerization, meditation, and downright displacement of light. 

felipe pantone
FP curates the jagged edge (via PANT1)

Much like anything in life, these portraits exist on a spectrum. Here are the key elements Felipe puts forth.

  • Dynamism
  • Sensation of visual vibration
  • Moire effect – contrasting colors give impression of constant movement

Without a doubt, this graffiti artist has found a way to legally challenge the finite nature of the genre. 

virtual graffiti artist
8-bit gradients and pixelated abstractions are this artist’s specialty (via Felipe Pantone)

The virtual graffiti artist flips the script with configurable, optimizable, and modular gems

Through meditation and conceptualization of digital information these works of art have begun to establish permanence on the blockchain. Check out a few ways in which he bestows brilliance.

  • Frescoes
  • Murals 
  • Paintings
  • Sculptures

The key term surrounding PANT1 masterpieces is tactile merit. He delivers his art with conviction and absolute value. Normally, graffiti represents a temporary state of variance. 

virtual graffiti artist
Fake it until you make it never entered his mind (via Pantone)

With futuristic ideas that transcend the time and space continuum, this contemporary artist reinvents the wheel every time he touches a canvas.

Earth is meant to be conquered

Our world is dynamic. Seeing it through solely two black and white lenses will certainly leave you feeling grey. Perhaps even blue, because the ultimate truth is that we exist within the throws of many different hues. 

felipe pantone
This piece gives strong Yeezus CD vibes and showcases infinity (via Maco Galeria)

Recognition of color is a firm realization that we all are different. Yet although we share differences and reach compatible adaptations, we are all equal.

There is no doubt each and every person contains the capability to bring something tangible to the table every single day. Please do.

DIGITALAX launches new Minecraft-focused NFT esports tournament

DIGITALAX recently announced the launch of Minecraft Bed Wars ESPA Casual Esports tournaments and the new Minecraft Digital Fashion Skins that are setting the temperatures high for gamers.

In only a few months, non-fungible tokens (NFTs) have come to the forefront of the cryptocurrency space. In addition to building immense hype for digital art collectibles in the form of blockchain-based tokens, they have contributed enormously to the adoption of crypto assets in general.

Today, gamers, celebrities, artists, sports stars, and influencers are all excited to get into the NFT space and buy new tokens or create their own to sell across NFT marketplaces.

Amid this, gaming is one of the most largely impacted sectors by the proliferation of NFTs’ demand. Many projects are currently working to integrate NFTs into games and implement new use cases. The digital fashion engine DIGITALAX has utilized this opportunity all too well.

DIGITALAX empowers gamers to have “skin in the game”

The Minecraft skins launched for the ESPA tournament are a class apart from the usual NFTs like the CryptoPunk and CryptoKitties. DIGITALAX has created a 3D animated render of multiple Minecraft-like characters that users can buy on the layer-2 blockchain network Polygon. 

Each of the 3D Minecraft characters is embedded with contrasting colors to represent unique themes and fashion. These avatars range from an Ethereum Unicorn that is more colorful than a rainbow to The Chairman that looks all dressed, tidy, and ready to rock the day at the office. 

There are 12 types of skins with three degrees of rarity, each designed by DIGITALAX in collaboration with the popular Minecraft skin designer Cleora.

To participate in the ESPA tournaments by DIGITALAX, players need to go to the official ESPA website and sign up using their MetaMask or Arkane wallet. Upon successful signup, players can register their Minecraft username and be eligible to participate in the tournaments to win $MONA as a reward.

The digital fashion skins as 3D Minecraft avatars will act as the official in-game authentication and identity markers for the players in the game. According to DIGITALAX, the skin will also act as proof for the users’ involvement in the game and help them earn $MONA.

Creating a unique gaming ecosystem

Through the combination of fashion, gaming, blockchain, and cryptocurrencies, DIGITALAX is shaping an entirely new gaming ecosystem. Apart from creating the first casual esports for indie and modded games in the form of ESPA, DIGITALAX has much more to offer.

As a Web3-only metaverse, it not only focuses on the experience of gamers but also the developers, modders, and designers who add life to these games.

The platform offers a fashion toolkit for designers to create and deploy digital clothing that they can easily deploy across gaming platforms. The developers can then use these exclusive fashion apparels for the games they develop games.

Lastly, of course, the players get to experience what the designers and developers have collaboratively created.

Terra Virtua reflects fair value within the NFT space

As is the case with anything, judgment is never proper protocol when it comes to NFT observation. Rather than make dismissive commentary based upon preconceived digital notions, we decided to delve deeper into the platform Terra Virtua.

Terra Virtua is the world’s first fully immersive digital collectibles platform. Using blockchain technology, the company allows digital asset collectors to display and interact with their virtual goods in augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), and in 3D on PCs.

nft observation
The Br8ve is an artwork commissioned by early anonymous crypto OG, who revealed that Satoshi Nakamoto is eight different experts in their fields. (Terra Virtua)

Terra Virtua

The company utilizes 8K hospital-grade resolution VR technology from the likes of Satoshi Nakamoto. Through observation, Satoshi’s NFT, ‘The Br8ve’ is one of the first fully functional NFT’s that incorporates airplane grade visual resolution via headset, controllers, and laptop. 

Terra Virtua had to make many adjustments to its website prior to becoming the powerhouse that it is today. Here are a few features it has improved and installed on its website.

  • Instituted queue system to ensure fair purchase process 
  • New purchases can generate new use cases
  • Intermixed functionality with OINDAO platform provides stablecoin synergy
  • Consistent blockchain restructuring

Basically, the company sells minimalistic collectibles that represent the immersive qualities of VR, AR, and 3-D. Some of their items have high resale value like the Gen 2 Vflects.

A really neat feature about the company is that you can purchase an NFT on its site but transfer it elsewhere. TV’s functional transfer features yield inventory on external marketplaces. 

nft observation
VFlects fly off the shelves for $30 or less while reselling at nearly $500 sometimes (Miro.Medium)

How does the system flow?

Terra Virtua has a functional ETH user base UX that has a similar system flow for FIAT users.

It has installed a logic layer for open transfers and allowed for FIAT and ETH users to experience a simultaneous use case. In turn, the system tracks the external user validation runtime record.

How else does the system perform regulatory self-maintenance?

The interoperable metamask sorts display filters, server side integrations and performs consistent platform enhancements. 

Here are two of the most rare finds we scoured for on the Terra Virtua platform:

What can we expect from companies like this in the future?

As a community, Terra Virtua has been adamant about ending all “rug pulls.” A rug pull is an exit scam by which the developers abandon a project and run off with investor funds.

The company is committed to uprooting these devious acts and solving metadata issues as well. 

terra virtua
What NFT consumers will see before their Terra Virtua NFT becomes available (Terra Virtua)

Terra Virtua has a very modern and refreshing platform that they have developed. Their company also has perks such as a colossal digital fan cave, terra dome, prestige club, and other interesting offerings. Head on over to the platform to see what it’s all about!

Migrate Art is raising resources for Myanmar with beautiful art

Thousands of locals are crowded in the streets of Myanmar protesting against the military coup that started this February. For years the people of Myanmar have been subjected to a military regime that not only has caused conflict but more importantly, the Rohingya people have become victims of a deadly genocide. Migrate Art and its series Raising for Myanmar is working to help.

Recently, Aung San Suu Kyi, the nation’s leader, was arrested for carrying walkie-talkies. And, after the protest escalated, the military launched airstrikes in retaliation, killing 6 people and injuring 11.

raising for myanmar
Art by: Michael Craig Martin

“An eminent bloodbath” is how The United Nations has described the events taking place in Maynmar.

Unfortunately, little awareness about this ongoing conflict has been raised by the media. However, a group of artists has come together through Migrate Art to raise awareness and funds to help the cause.

Raising for Myanmar

Raising for Myanmar, a timed-edition poster series acting as an emergency fundraiser appeal for the deteriorating situation in Myanmar.

Migrate Art is producing a series of 21 ‘protest posters’ to raise funds for the victims of the violent military coup that struck the country in February 2021.

raising for myanmar
Art by: Tacita Dean

21 of the most renowned artists, including Tacita Dean, Richard Mosse, Pietro Ruffo, Guerrilla Girls, and Sean Scully, have donated their works to Migrate Art’s initiative.

“The idea to focus on this medium, in particular, relates to the key role posters have played in the Burmese resistance. Raising for Myanmar comes from the genuine urge to support people whose who are facing situations of extreme violence. It has been incredibly uplifting to see such a positive and quick response from all the artists involved”

Simon Butler, Founder of Migrate Art

The project, Raising for Myanmar — as his previous ones — stands as a testament to the power of collectivity and creativity. It demonstrates the art industry’s power to unite, create and alleviate.

migrate art
Art by: Richard Mosse

Kulture Hub had the opportunity to interview Simon Butler, founder, and curator of Migrates Art.

“Hearing about the increase in violence and seeing first-hand photos from my friend (who lives and works in Yangon) compelled me to curate a project to help. I also visited Myanmar in 2019 and experienced the beauty of the country and its people I knew I had to do something.”

Simon Butler, Founder of Migrate Art

Each poster will be sold for £50 in support of Mutual Aid Myanmar, listed in the collective platform Support, Myanmar Fund. Profits will be put towards the relief of medical staff, striking government workers, and civilians who continue to protest on the streets despite life-threatening conditions.

Migrate Art

Founded in 2016 by Simon Butler, Migrate Art is a social enterprise dedicated to raise money for the refugee crisis through contemporary art. The company successfully empowers displaced people by collaborating with the world’s leading creative thinkers and grassroots charities.

migrate art
Art by: Guerrilla Girls

This way, they have raised over £600,000, funded projects across the UK, Europe, and the Middle East. Not to mention that they have worked with many of the world’s best artists including Anish Kapoor, Mona Hatoum, Sean Scully, Shepard Fairey, Antony Gormley, and Loie Hollowell.

“At the very core of Migrate Art’s ethos is the theme of empowerment. I would say this is the greatest inspiration behind creating it. Through working with our charity partners, we are able to empower displaced and homeless people to rebuild their lives. This comes in the form of food, shelter, education, and job opportunities, as we feel everyone in the world should have the opportunity to live the life they want to.”

Simon Butler, Founder of Migrate Art

But, they also manage to empower the artist they work with and the people that engage with their projects. “There are a lot of people out there that want to help society in some way but don’t know-how. Migrate Art provides a platform for people to experience art, but also help the wider world” he told us.

Other projects to know

Thus, the first of his projects was Multicolour. A project focused on creating unique art pieces using pencil Butler found “in the wreckage of the Calais Jungle Refugee Camp” after it was demolished in 2016. The artist that collaborated with the works included Richard Deacon, Anish Kapoor, and Rachel Whiteread.

raising for myanmar
Art by: Conor Harrington

This happened after he learned about his brother’s experience at the Calais Jungle. Hearing the stories his brother told Butler was inspired to visit the place himself. He quickly realized that reading about the world events in the newspaper was not enough.

“I had been reading a lot of derogatory articles in the media about ‘swarms’ of migrants. But, the real-life experience was the opposite – they were kind, caring human beings just trying to survive in any way they could. This changed something in me, and I have been finding ways to use art to help ever since.”

Simon Butler, Founder of Migrate Art

Not only was the lack of information concerning, has the lack of information he found most problematic. That is how this organization started.

migrate art
Art by: Sean Scully

After going to auction at Phillips London in April 2019, Multicolour raised £121,000 in support of those affected by the global refugee crisis.

Simon Butler

“I would say my work is currently focused on the intersection between humanitarianism and art. This can probably be traced back to 2016 when I visited the Calais Jungle refugee camp in France. This experience is what inspired me to create Migrate Art.”

Simon Butler, Founder of Migrate Art
raising for myanmar
Art by: Simon Butler, Founder of Migrate Art

Simon is a trained designer, but an artist at heart. He studied graphic design but, after assisting the artist D*Face, he quickly realized he was more interested in Contemporary Art. Thus, he refocused his energy and built a career of working in galleries for 8 years.

Finally, in 2016, Butler created Migrate Art, “and haven’t looked back.”

“I had been working in the contemporary art world for several years and saw a stark contrast between thousands of people living in refugee camps and the huge amount of wealth in the art industry. Visiting Calais and other parts of the world impacted by migration opened my eyes to the world outside my own ‘bubble’. To meet people that had nothing and be greeted in such a kind, open and friendly manner, I knew I had to find a way to help.”

Simon Butler, Founder of Migrate Art

Close to his heart and perhaps his favorite of all projects is the Scorched Earth. It started while he was visiting refugee camps in the Kurdistan region of northern Iraq. While there, ISIS was burning crop fields to show they still had a presence in the region.

raising for myanmar
Art by: Anish Kapoor

“I had the idea to smuggle some of the ash back to London in my luggage and make paint After disguising it as a tea to get it through customs, we successfully made paint, and 15 of the world’s best artists made work with this paint. The project was a big success and raised over £350,000, and I’m really proud of this one in particular.”

Simon Butler, Founder of Migrate Art

Migrate Art being the catalyst for change

When looking through history, Simon Butler finds art to be “the catalyst of change.” After all, art has proofed to be an extremely powerful tool. Not does it inspires to make a difference but connects thousands of people around the world through a single experience.

Thus, for him, art is a tool to talk about wider issues. But most importantly, to share ideas with people that might not know about the causes we support. “

“We understand that art is an emotive experience, and it often connects with people on a deeper level than reading an article in the news.”

Simon Butler, Founder of Migrate Art

Slowly, Migrate Art is becoming a global organization. It is taking a unique approach to projects all over the world and bringing a series of distinguished artists together in the name of change.

migrate art
Art by: Ken Nwadiogdu

“Global migration is only growing, and will continue to grow due to climate change and conflict, so we need to be able to continue growing to meet this increase in people that need help.”

Simon Butler, Founder of Migrate Art

Following a digital launch on Migrate Art’s website, Raising for Myanmar’s posters will be exhibited in Mayfair from May 24th, and will be available to purchase through QR codes assigned to each piece. Posters will be on sale from May 10th to June 27th.