Hello and welcome to the newest edition of Minty Fresh, your weekly source for amazing, energy-efficient NFTs minted on Tezos! This week's secret word is "faces," a celebration of digital portraits on the blockchain.
Faces, you see a lot of people
Got two faces, you must give your mind
To all the faces, they know the way to be the one
Faces, for every time
1. Reflective Conversation
"From the beginnings of ZALA, a tribute to #HENreunion."
Let's start off with this piece by the Brazilian artist ZALA, as part of this weekend's #HENreunion mint party. In a celebration of the OG Tezos marketplace, Hic et Nunc, the Teia Community has organized a three-day minting party for any artists minting on Tezos. Here, ZALA calls back to their early Tezos art, creating this sweet and silly scene of three characters in conversation. The faces in Reflective Conversation are cartoonish and even a little animalistic. Is it just us, or do they remind you of sloths...? Check it out on Teia.
2. The Blind
"Made by Yonku x Ai"
German-based artist Yonku created this captivating, futuristic face in their 1/1 release The Blind. It brings to mind the Twilight Zone and 1960s retro-futuristic depictions of AI and humanity. The fact that now, in the 21st century, it is possible to make art with the help of AI, makes this aesthetic reference all the more powerful. This face was not drawn with eyes, as Yonku raises questions about why the figure is blind, and what the figure isn't seeing. Find this work on Objkt.
3. 20-Sided Elf
"...An AI elf futurist..."
Artist, filmmaker, and writer Zach Blas made 20-Sided Elf as part of FeralFile's latest exhibiton minted on Tezos, called Harbingers and curated by Julia Kaganskiy. This work is based on an automated session with the artist's Icosahedron, an "AI crystal ball that houses an immortal elf soothsayer." The crystal ball was modeled after the 20-sided die inside a Magic 8 Ball; the elf that lives inside is trained by 20 different pieces of text that influence Silicon's Valley's view of the future, such as Lord of the Flies and works by Ayn Rand. So the resulting NFT is an encapsulation of futurism, fantasy, technology, and academia. Read more on FeralFile.
"...A unique generative art project that depicts a painted female portrait."
Time for something beautiful. Hevey's latest release on fx(hash) is a collection of 32 generated female portraits. Unlike other generative portrait projects, Cleya is entirely based on AI – there are no real, human photographs it references. Even in the fine art world, most contemporary painters use reference photographs, so Hevey is part of a growing movement of creating completely new faces. Of course, this power of an AI and an artist working together to make original portraits brings to mind questions of humanity, existentialism, and the future relationship between man and machine. See more on fx(hash).
5. A point of no return
"An irreversible action, a point beyond control, impossible to stop, unavoidable, unpredictable..."
The image above is a still from artist Martina Menegon's contribution to VerticalCryto Art's exhibition IN TOUCH - Art in Age of Post-NFTism. For this interactive work, Menegon took a group of her glitched selfies and used algorithms to force them together, creating a helpless cloud of erroneous self-portraits. The artist wants to bring attention to self-care in digital spaces. How do we treat and care for our avatars? In this work, they lose their agency and it is up to the viewer, the person in control of the cursor to treat them with care. Check it out on VerticalCrypto Art.
6. Ecstatic boy
"Do you know a heart of gold with radiation of sun?"
Iranian surrealist photographer Sazin has spent the past several days photographing her subjects exclusively indoors, as Iran's recent protests have made working outside too dangerous. In Ecstatic boy, she captures an incredible moment of strength, beauty, and resilience in a time of violence. Accompanying the photograph is a short poem, a love story between subject and artist. The ecstatic boy in the photograph has pearls where teardrops may be, holds an umbrella inside, and wears a delicate lace sweater. Behind him, a dark red sky shines through the curtained window, alluding to the juxtaposition between the safety in this space versus the danger that is just beyond the walls. You can find Sazin's work on Objkt.