Zien would like to introduce our open-source, on-chain innovation: Expanded NFTs. In essence, these are artworks collected as NFTs which are then redeemed on-chain for unique material counterparts. But where do Expanded NFTs come from? How do they work? And, why do they matter? To answer these questions, first we need to zoom out.
The media theorist Marshall McLuhan wrote that “all technologies are extensions of our physical and nervous systems.” This was in the 1960s, an era of television, radio, magazines, and adverts: a time of popular media shaping societies, economies, and subcultures. McLuhan was explaining that we — humans — come first, and then we make things that amplify some part of us. The human at the centre of this worldview is central to a picture of how the world is extrapolated from our minds and our bodies.
Don’t miss our inaugural drop of Season 01—Sentimentite by Agnieszka Kurant—going live at 12 UTC+1 on Monday July 25. Text “Hi” to +44 7476 560489 on WhatsApp to access the drop.
Zien is a WhatsApp channel to collect contemporary art as Expanded NFTs. ERC-721 (NFTs) tokens that can be redeemed on-chain for unique physical counterparts.
Zien brings worlds together: web2 and web3, 2D and 3D, NFTs and contemporary art. Zien is part gallery, production studio, foundation, think-tank, para-institution — an experiment in what can be done with the new tools we have at hand. We find ourselves at a curious stage of history, where some things feel “late” while others — such as crypto and blockchain — feel “early.” We believe there is huge potential in working alongside artists to grow new techno-cultural realities that emerge from this unique moment in time.