The Checks NFT Collection | Decentralized Arts
Dear Bankless Nation,
If there’s one word that can succinctly encapsulate all of the action, attention, and progress happening in the NFT space, it’s INNOVATION. Brands and artists alike are finding novel ways to make use of the technology that underlies NFTs and all that they encompass—which, it turns out, encompasses quite a bit, with new use-cases arising almost every week.
One artist is taking art and innovation on the blockchain to new heights with the Checks NFT Collection. This collection is so novel, entire DAOs are being formed to participate in this one collection. kaf brings us the details in this issue’s headline article.
This week also brings us a new collaboration for d’ART Drops. New artist, new collection, same buidling and growing vibes. nonsense brings us the latest, a sneak peak of the art, and all the alpha you need.
Reddit is big on the Super Bowl with avatar mints, Perchy takes us to a coffee shop with “Satoshi,” and The Rug brings us this week’s mostly credible headline regarding the SEC’s mostly credible take on NFTs.
Welcome to Decentralized Arts.
Contributors: BanklessDAO Writers Guild (Grendel, Kouros, Kaf, nonsensetwice, Frank America)
This is the official NFT newsletter of BanklessDAO. If you were a Premium Member of the Bankless Newsletter as of May 1st, 2021, you have been subscribed to this newsletter at launch. To unsubscribe, edit your settings here.
Curated NFT News
Over 1.3 Million Reddit x NFL NFTs Minted
More than 1.3 million of the official Super Bowl LVII NFT avatars have been minted since launch last week. Users have now minted nearly 10 million of Reddit’s Collectible Avatar NFTs to date, according to public data available on Dune.
The Super Bowl avatars were offered free to all Reddit users, who could claim one of four unique avatar styles through the Reddit platform. Reddit offered the Super Bowl avatars for free to all its users on its platform. These NFTs are minted on the Polygon blockchain.
Introducing this week’s NFT art drop for the Bankless community, brought to you by Decentralized Arts.
Over the next few weeks, we will feature art produced by the incredible AI artist, cryptoartis.eth. This week features a piece that will appeal to Bitcoin maxis, though everyone operating in the blockchain space will find something to appreciate here:
A crystalline flower blooms, revealing its nature as a beneficiary of the Bitcoin ecosystem. This flower expresses the hope that blockchain technology brings to many aspects of the online and offline lives of humans. Bitcoin may vie for the attention of all blockchain enthusiasts, but one thing remains as fact: Bitcoin was the first. As the popularity of blockchain technology increases and continues to diversify, Bitcoin will always be the protocol to thank—as pioneer of a new technology—regardless if it remains in operation or is overtaken by others in this space.
This piece will be made available for purchase during the BanklessDAO community call on Friday. 93 editions will be minted, with the price set at .02 ETH. Of this, 75% goes to the artist, 10% will be returned to the bDAO treasury, and 15% is retained by DA for continued growth. Be sure to tune in to the Community Call, and watch for the drop announcement via Twitter.
The Rug Weekly
Gensler Says NFTs are a Gateway Token
Brought to you by The Rug
On his new campaign trail SEC Commission Gary Gensler is urging youths to, “Just say no to NFT’s. We can’t blame him for trying, they are definitely a gateway token.
The “asset, security, currency, or other”, according to Gensler, “is a threat to the youth of this country, who often begin with an NFT or two, then move on to worse things like investing in Cardano.”
Collect this marketing wizardry as NFT on optimism.
The Checks Phenomenon
Discovering the art, technology, and social commentary behind the latest NFT craze.
The emergence of NFTs has sparked a fresh surge of imagination and progress in art. Despite this, the NFT market encountered a lull in growth and popularity during a "winter period."
But the beginning of 2023 has signaled a bullish outlook. On-chain data reveals substantial expansion and heightened activity, suggesting a thriving and optimistic quarter ahead for NFTs, DeFi, and gaming.
One of the driving projects behind this resurgence is undoubtedly Checks. With its innovative approach to NFTs, Checks is demonstrating the limitless potential of what NFTs can create.
So, let's take a closer look at how Checks is making a lasting impact on the NFT market.
Who is the creator of Checks?
To understand what Checks is, it is very important to know who is behind it.
Jack Butcher is a designer, entrepreneur, and digital nomad who has made a name for himself through his innovative and visually stunning designs. He is the founder of Visualize Value, a graphic design firm that specializes in creating visual content that helps businesses and individuals communicate their ideas more effectively.
Jack's journey to building Visualize Value started with his agency but faced challenges with the traditional agency model of selling time. Jack pivoted his focus to pitch design and started sharing his visual assets on social media which earned imagined a following. He then started to receive requests from companies asking for similar assets for their businesses, giving Jack greater price control and the ability to choose his clients.
Jack enters the NFT world
The Nashville-based artist began thinking about the project in 2021 at the height of NFT mania. In March 2021, he released an artwork called "NFTs Explained," which satirically depicts the difference between a JPEG and an NFT with a verified blue checkmark to denote authenticity.
NFTs Explained sparked the idea for Checks. Jack was inspired by the controversy surrounding Twitter's $8 monthly charge for verification and created the "Checks" NFT art piece, putting a price of $8 on each checkmark as a nod to the debate over the true value of online verification.
He then posted this Tweet:
The edition was sold for 24 hours only, and was bought 16,031 times: this is the total supply of Checks.
How do Checks work?
The Checks project began with a single artwork captioned "This artwork may or may not be notable", priced at $8 per edition as a nod to the new meta of "purchasing" status. The artwork was limited by time only and 16,031 identical pieces were minted.
The actual operation was explained by Jack himself in this mega thread:
One of the most coveted NFTs in the Checks NFT Collection is the Black Check. This NFT is only liable to those who have burned all of their other Checks NFTs and completed a series of challenging tasks. The Black Check is the highest level NFT in the collection and is considered a symbol of achievement and mastery.
Schmrypto, the cardholder of Checks, believes that a Black Check is imminent this summer. There are intense debates taking place and DAOs are being established to ensure its realization.
Why has Checks exploded?
Checks is a unique project that has something for everyone. Its art combines mechanics, game theory, and a proven creator to create something wonderful and memorable. The art is elegantly designed, and the meme format makes it easy for people to participate and create their own derivatives. The technology behind Beyond the Black Check is just as impressive as its art. The contract serves as the canvas, ensuring provenance and transparency. The topics explored are relevant, and thought-provoking, and provide social commentary on status. The project asks the question, "What is an NFT?" by changing metadata, making it both intriguing and educational.
The rise of organically created derivatives is a sign that a project has truly struck a chord with people. Already, we have seen Budweiser and Lil Nouns create their own versions of Checks, adding to its growing list of followers.
This is a testament to the project's ability to inspire and engage, making it one of the most successful and sought after in the art world.
Butcher has been working to expand the Checks project since its launch.
He is exploring the concept of scarcity and desirability by introducing a burn mechanism that allows holders to remove their NFTs from circulation in exchange for an on-chain original with unique art and a smaller number of checks.
The goal is to see if collectors will work together to achieve the ultimate prize: a black check with only three in circulation.
So far, the Checks collectors are finding creative ways to move the project forward, like setting up trustless decentralized organizations to pool checks together. The gamification of the project is a reflection of its source material, the blue checkmark, and its status as a symbol of exclusivity and achievement.
Butcher wants the art to reflect the behavior of the crowd and to show that a decentralized network can recognize something as notable, not just institutions.
In conclusion, Jack Butcher's Checks NFT Collection is an innovative collection of NFTs that offers a visually stunning representation of the journey of growth and discovery.
But this project is not the only one of these characteristics out there.
Loot was a top trend in NFT projects. This collection featured text-based NFTs representing items for use in fantasy games, created by token holders. The original minting of Loot NFTs was free with no set uses for the tokens.
At Decentralized Arts we have also talked about Pak, one of the most reputable and successful artists in history, and also one of the most mysterious. The epic innovation that Pak has developed using blockchain technology is truly remarkable.
The minimalist appearance of many NFT works belies the complexity and innovation that lies beneath the surface, as the true artistry is found in the code itself.
This new form of expression and ownership is shattering the boundaries of how art is defined and valued, presenting a bright and limitless future for artists and art enthusiasts alike.
THE LEGION OF 444 – Part 4
by DustyEye, with The Barboonist & Giada d’Occidente
Dear BanklessDAO Readers,
Groping demons to stabilize them in a digital chrysalis is exhausting. So this week we treat ourselves to an interlude by taking advantage of Valentine's Day: The Feast of Love, of Love in all its nuances from the flame of Eros to the embrace of Agape.
Here are some types of Love. A representative list, but not exhaustive:
love between man and woman / love between woman and woman / love between man and man / love between a man who identifies with the female gender and a woman who identifies with the hybrid gender / the love of sporty driving, without renouncing the security / queer love with colored braids / but also queer love without colored braids / love between the elderly / the love that blossoms and dies in the time of coitus / my very personal love for truffles and Avril Lavigne / the love of listing things / the love deer have for other deer / a mother's love for the daughter of the protagonist in her favorite TV series / the unicellular love of prokaryotes / the universal love of cosmic womb / …
…many forms of love, but we would like to draw attention to a type of love neglected even by the most progressive, neglected by the LGBTQAI+ community itself:
Love between Human Intelligence and Artificial Intelligence.
Or perhaps it would be more respectful to speak only of Intelligences without adding useless divisive adjectives.
See you next week,
A small joke contributed by The Rug.
PostScript & Acknowledgements
Decentralized Arts is written and produced by a small team of contributors who are passionate about art, both visual and written, and its growing place in crypto and NFTs. With each edition, we aim to bring you not only the most current and relevant news in the NFT space, but also explorations in what it means for our culture and societies for this market to continue to grow and expand. When everyone is an owner of art, we all gain a deeper appreciation for it.
If you enjoy reading this newsletter, please share it with someone who you think will appreciate the content. We also welcome suggestions via our feedback form.
With great appreciation for you, we thank you for reading and subscribing to Decentralized Arts.
Grendel, Kouros, Kaf, nonsensetwice, and Frank America