Curation Notes: You Are Here

Note: You Are Here is my second accepted proposal to the Fingerprints Curation Committee. I have long aligned with Fingerprints’s vision and collecting thesis, and my personal collection overlaps with theirs, including the piece I’m now writing about.

You Are Here

You Are Here is a conceptual art collection by 0xfff from January 2024. The project is unique, coming to life with some fundamentally blockchain-native mechanics called “bridging”. Its unique mechanics, its conceptual exploration, and its on-chain existence fit Fingerprints DAO’s curation thesis perfectly. Further, the artist has shown consistency in releasing such works, the story of the collection is unique, and there is clear innovation. Therefore You Are Here finds a respectable spot in Fingerprints’s collection.

How You Are Here fits my and FP's curation criteria
How You Are Here fits my and FP's curation criteria

Mechanics, Aesthetics and Concept

With only 31+3 tokens, You Are Here is a relatively small collection. It is minted across 31 chains, where one token per chain gets minted. The artist reserves the right to mint more tokens if new chains become supported by Layer Zero Labs.

Art starts with a simple black dot on a white canvas. The starting dot for each token is different, as dots are positioned deterministically for each blockchain.

Starting point for Ethereum, Optimism, and Fantom
Starting point for Ethereum, Optimism, and Fantom

Art can then be transferred (or “bridged”) across different blockchains. This act of bridging leaves a line trace behind, telling the owner of the token: now “YOU ARE HERE”.

For non-crypto-native readers: Bridging is the act of transferring tokens from one chain to another, usually using custodial services. Bridges are typically considered unsafe and open to hacks due their centralized nature, however recently more work has been done to find decentralized and therefore more secure solutions. Also, not all bridges are the same - bridges between the chains within the same ecosystem (such as L2s to L1s and vice versa) tend to be safer.

As bridges get drawn, art can become chaotic. With each bridge, the owner leaves a digital footprint that can’t be erased because art is stored fully on-chain. However, if the collector plans it, they can draw something they desire within the placement limitations encoded by the artist.

How to draw a Star
How to draw a Star

This is also known as “programmable art”, where collectors participate in art alongside the artist. Collector participation is always worth exploring. Different projects in this category ask for different levels of participation from their collectors, and the difference in these requirements is what makes each project in this niche interesting. Previous examples include Brotchain, Etholvants, Terraforms, The Metro, Chaos Roads, and several more.

In this case, the boundaries are defined in the placement of dots for blockchains. The placements are determined by the chain, using the token IDs as seed. Of course, the fact that the transfer footprint cannot be erased also presents a thoughtful challenge for the collector.

The artist's concept, smart contracts, pre-determined boundaries of each chain's location, and collectors' participation tell the final story of each piece.

Ultimately, while a whole bunch is happening in the background, You Are Here still sticks to its conceptual roots and brings out a relatively simple design: Interconnected black dots and lines on a white canvas. This is not coincidental, the aesthetic is inspired by early maps of ARPANET, the 1969 precursor of today's Internet.

As ARPANET was decommissioned in 1989, it was replaced by the Internet, which grew and became the -relatively- decentralized information hub we have today.


As the blockchain space grows, we expect it to also grow and enable seamless bridging, swapping, and transferring between different chains and wallets, creating a decentralized value hub. Whether this will be a reality is one of the questions You Are Here is asking.

It’s also -perhaps unintentionally- a historical document. If some of these chains shut down completely, You Are Here will be living proof of the disappeared chain’s historical existence.

On the technical side, the artwork is an SVG file, fully generated by the EVM and stored on-chain. Under the hood, it’s using LayerZero for bridging and CREATE2 for a single consistent address across chains. I am told 0xmons (behind SudoSwap and the NFT project 0xMons) had important contributions to the smart contracts. The tracked bridges are limited to the last 100 transfers.

Artist Profile

As a relatively newer artist in the conceptual art NFT space, 0xfff first caught attention with their BEEF series, which included pieces with unique conditions assigned to them for them to be ownable or transferrable.

Some pieces from the BEEF collection
Some pieces from the BEEF collection

Many pieces had no financial value, as they could be transferable with no conditions (note: they were still on sale on primary). Some were purely experimental, and they were welcomed by conceptual art fans.

Using EVM runtime opens up interesting possibilities and 0xfff is aware of these possibilities. Their future projects seem to be also in the on-chain conceptual art realm.

Closing Thoughts

You Are Here meets almost all of the objective curation criteria: It's on-chain, dynamic, ownership-driven, and doing all of these through smart contract mechanics. Its use of bridging to draw the art is unique, and the usage of the technology to achieve its conceptual goal is certainly innovative.

You Are Here invites its collectors to experience art by exploring multiple blockchains, paying gas fees, and leaving their digital footprints on canvas. It pushes them to choose between a chaotic display, a simple blank display, or a planned display.

There’s a clear focus on connections in the small collection, as it touches on the topic of “decentralized connection of decentralized networks”, and underscores it with a reference to the Internet.

I am excited to draw my own You Are Here map, and follow 0xfff's new projects.

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