What exactly are “Bored Apes”?

What exactly are “Bored Apes”?

Andrea Tuzio · 5 months ago · Art

Chances are you’ve come across the news that Eminem purchased an NFT of the so-called “Bored Apes” for $450,000 and then set the image as his profile picture (go check out his Instagram account). Nicknamed “EminApe”, given the resemblance to the rapper from Detroit, this NFT is just one of the many digital collectibles in limited series children of the Bored Ape Yacht Club project that are having a huge success and virality producing an unprecedented turnover (on the OpenSea platform, the largest marketplace for NFT, has exceeded one billion dollars).
But what are these “Bored Apes” and what is the Bored Ape Yacht Club?

 
 
 
 
 
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Un post condiviso da Bored Ape Yacht Club (@boredapeyachtclub)

Among other things 2021 has bequeathed us is the explosion of NFTs (non-fungible tokens), a particular type of cryptographic token – a sort of certificate of authenticity – that ensures the uniqueness and ownership of certain digital works. In this elitist welter of virtual works of art sold at very high prices stand out the “Bored Ape” (soon they will also be the protagonists of a collaboration with adidas, see post above), illustrations that represent bored apes, each one different from the other and made by the so-called Bored Ape Yacht Club, a project founded by two 30-year-old “literary nerds” – so they called themselves – whose identity is hidden behind two pseudonyms, Gargamel and Gordon Goner. Before the Bored Ape Yacht Club Gargamel was an editor and writer while Gordon Goner was ready to attend a course of study on art but in the end, due to an illness that has confined him at home, he decided to devote himself to day trading cryptocurrencies. 

Once the decision was made to enter the world of collectible NFTs, the choice of subject matter was not easy, but in the end they agreed on apes (both of them had a particular passion for these primates) but they had to have a bored attitude. The artistic part was delegated to an algorithm that randomly originated the digital apes, while the duo put into action the plan to create an exclusive club formed by the owners of the digital illustrations.

In April 2021 the two launched the first batch of Bored Ape composed of ten thousand illustrations all different and all sold within the first 24 hours for $200 each earning $2 million. But this is just the beginning. 
The concept of the exclusive club thought by Goner and Gargamel becomes reality almost immediately. The owners of the Bored Ape began to replace their profile picture (at first Twitter but then also Instagram) with the ape purchased, a sort of sign of recognition that automatically led buyers to discuss with each other and form relationships, a sort of status symbol that determined a precise belonging.

From that point forward, thanks to the secondary market, the amounts spent on the Bored Ape skyrocketed. A nearly $100 million total turnover, with the cheapest illustrations reselling for nearly $14,000. 

The immense popularity gained, thanks to the likes of two-time NBA MVP and best shooter in basketball history Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors, and Jimmy Fallon who bought a Bored Ape communicating it on their social media, gave way to a whole series of similar projects launched on a weekly basis, hoping to achieve the success of the Bored Ape but with mixed results.

The work of the Bored Ape Yacht Club has not stopped, however. A series of collateral and complementary projects have been launched by the founders, such as the development of new NFT (dogs and mutant apes), the organization of meetings between the owners of the apes and apparently will be made a video game starring obviously the bored apes available only to the owners of the most viral illustration of the network.

The peculiarity of the project, however, lies in the concept of ownership. All owners can use in the most diverse and commercially attractive ways their NFT: make it a brand, build a story around their ape and then potentially turn it into a series / animated film or not, etc.. This opportunity gives owners the chance to economically exploit their purchase by trying to make their investment pay off and at the same time allows the Bored Ape Yacht Club to enjoy a blinding reflected light in terms of popularity. 

Bu this is only the beginning. Phenomena such as the Bored Ape are popping up and will continue to pop up like mushrooms in a market with a potentially limitless expansion and that will clash with the volatility typical of a system that is still poorly defined and with rules that seem to have not yet been deciphered. 

What exactly are “Bored Apes”?
Art
What exactly are “Bored Apes”?
What exactly are “Bored Apes”?
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“Okja” in ten frames

“Okja” in ten frames

Giulia Guido · 2 weeks ago · Art

Okja” is a 2017 film directed by Bong Joon-ho. Although it did not rake in awards like the subsequent “Parasite“, “Okja” ranks among the South Korean director’s best works and features an ensemble cast that includes Tilda Swinton, Paul Dano, Lily Collins, Giancarlo Esposito, and Jake Gyllenhaal.

The film tells the story of a young girl who for most of her life has raised a genetically modified “super pig,” building a bond of mutual affection with him. But their lives are set to change drastically as the industry that actually created the animal must take it back to begin the slaughtering process.
This is an exposing film against the mistreatment of animals within the meat industry that manages to deal with the topic by focusing on empathy and friendship. For this very reason in 2019 it was named one of the most influential films of the decade by the New York Times. 

In “Okja,” the state of mind of the protagonist and her animal are reflected in the colors of the sets and the choices related to the cinematography, curated by Darius Khondji (Seven, Midnight in Paris, Uncut Gems), which manage to completely capture the viewer. 

Okja
Okja
Okja
Okja
Okja
Okja
“Okja” in ten frames
Art
“Okja” in ten frames
“Okja” in ten frames
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The illusion of calm in the illustrations of Kento IIDA

The illusion of calm in the illustrations of Kento IIDA

Tommaso Berra · 2 weeks ago · Art

You know the sky on certain summer days, when you couldn’t find a cloud miles away and everything above our heads is a delicate blue, the color of the sweetest of spun sugars? Illustrator Kento IIDA finds in this atmosphere of calm the inspiration for his works, images of tranquil landscapes but leaving an atmosphere of suspicion, as if something unforeseen will happen soon, or as if something unforeseen has just happened, far from the eyes of possible witnesses.
In these vignettes there are always elements or signs that suggest a movement that breaks the calm, sometimes the movement has already happened or is in progress, as in the case of cars launching from bridges or space missiles lifting angular clouds to the sky like marble sculptures.

Kento IIDA (who is based in Tokyo) incorporates elements of Japanese tradition in his illustrations, thus traditional buildings and views of snow-capped peaks that hint at Mount Fuji appear in these ambiguous scenes, as well as baseball players, a national sport in Japan and probably the artist’s favorite.
There are not only clear skies in the views, however; poetry is also provided by clouds, often single and isolated, or by gloomy skies that sound like an omen, in an increasingly suspended and uncertain time.

Kento IIDA | Collater.al
Kento IIDA | Collater.al
Kento IIDA | Collater.al
Kento IIDA | Collater.al
Kento IIDA | Collater.al
Kento IIDA | Collater.al
Kento IIDA | Collater.al
The illusion of calm in the illustrations of Kento IIDA
Art
The illusion of calm in the illustrations of Kento IIDA
The illusion of calm in the illustrations of Kento IIDA
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Vickie Vainionpää’s code-generated works

Vickie Vainionpää’s code-generated works

Tommaso Berra · 2 weeks ago · Art

Artistic expression is now no longer bound only to manual gesture, and in some cases not even to the artist’s choice. Vickie Vainionpää‘s works in fact follow that artistic strand in which works are the result of codes, of an algorithm that creates unpredictable solutions by reworking basic information. The Montreal-based artist creates his works through a generative code, which traces a certain number of points placed in a Cartesian plane.
The result is that of twisted shapes like guts or extraterrestrial organic creatures, in which even the color and shades are dictated by the generative code.

The forms are then the basis for oil paintings on canvas, in which the digital forms acquire a presence and matter through the texture of the support, the shadows and the layering of color. Some of these canvases are recently on display in New York at The Hole NYC gallery for the artist’s solo exhibition entitled “Software.”
In Vickie Vainionpää’s works, the relationship between man and machine merges, the physical and virtual experience become interconnected to the point of blurring the genesis of everything. Who creates? Who is created by whom? A series of questions that help read and complicate the present.

Vickie Vainionpàˆàˆ | Collater.al
Vickie Vainionpàˆàˆ | Collater.al
Vickie Vainionpàˆàˆ | Collater.al
Vickie Vainionpàˆàˆ | Collater.al
Vickie Vainionpàˆàˆ | Collater.al

Vickie Vainionpää’s code-generated works
Art
Vickie Vainionpää’s code-generated works
Vickie Vainionpää’s code-generated works
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Stefano Vitale trusted folk art

Stefano Vitale trusted folk art

Tommaso Berra · 1 week ago · Art

Arriving in the United States, in Los Angeles, to study at the University of Southern California, Stefano Vitale sought a way to express his hitherto unexpressed ideas using the skills he had at his disposal. Art began to figure as the most precise and sincere tool through which to do so, so he began a path that led him to a career as an established artist, thanks to his colorful and metaphysical illustrations, evocative of magical worlds in which nature dialogues with man, in which figures are suspended in mid-air in starry skies and under the hot Sicilian sun.

In the early years of his career, Stefano Vitale insists on a recurring subject, a one-eyed Madonna, a subject certainly influenced by the sacred iconography he studied and explored throughout his travels in Mexico and Central America. “I have always trusted popular art more than official art,” Vitale explains.
His look toward an elemental art is reflected in the style that uses simple lines, leaving the decorative component to color. The subjects are celebrations of joy or primal bonds such as that between mother and child or man and nature. Plants and leaves are superimposed on faces, while the sky is always a central subject of the compositions, signaled by the presence of bright stars or moons that make magical nights and sunsets.
Stefano Vitale’s work has then been linked for more than two decades by his collaboration with Donnafugata. For the Sicilian winery, the artist illustrates bottle labels, visually representing an imagery of flavors and smells that originates in Sicily, finds its inspiration from music and the Leopard, and seeps into sensory memory. Below are some of the labels created by Vitale for Donnafugata.

Stefano Vitale | Collater.al
Stefano Vitale | Collater.al
Stefano Vitale | Collater.al
Stefano Vitale trusted folk art
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Stefano Vitale trusted folk art
Stefano Vitale trusted folk art
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