NFTurtle Power: Tezos-Powered Digital Art Takes On An Important New Cause

TurtleVision is an interactive, dynamic generative art project designed to mimic the experience of a sea turtle that’s navigating Earth’s oceans in 2023.

Originally published at Tezos Commons News

By Stu Elmes


700 words, 4 minute read

NFTurtle Power Tezos-Powered Digital Art Takes On An Important New Cause image 1

At first glance, Taiwanese Digital Artist Eziraros and American Ocean Conservationist / Activist Casson Trenor may not appear to have very much in common.

One is a quiet, elusive artist whose digital identity exists almost exclusively via the avatars and indecipherable screen names common amongst today’s digital natives.

The other is the public, polished face of many a well-publicized environmental initiative.

The two also grew up an ocean apart.

Casson Trenor and Eziraros do share one important thing in common, however, and it’s a cause near and dear enough to both their hearts that it has brought them and their unique skillsets together, in common cause, to the Tezos ecosystem.

That cause is ocean conservation and addressing the scourge of plastic waste in our seas, and the philanthropic digital initiative Casson and “Ez” have developed to help win this existential fight is called TurtleVision. Let’s dive right in.

What is TurtleVision?

TurtleVision is an interactive, dynamic generative art project designed to mimic the experience of a sea turtle that’s navigating Earth’s oceans in 2023. More specifically, it is designed to mimic how a sea turtle interacts visually with its primary food source, the jellyfish, and the plastic waste rife in our global seas.

While visually interesting and beautiful to look at, however, TurtleVision’s generative art pieces also carry an important message about what ultimately becomes of the plastic waste in our seas — a message Casson Trenor wants to make sure is perfectly clear…

“Unfortunately, sea turtles have a very difficult time distinguishing between a jellyfish and a floating plastic bag. Because of that, we’re finding more and more sea turtles dead on beaches with thier stomachs full of plastic bags. Eziraros and I think that we can use generative code and art to create a situation that helps to reach people around that problem. So, TurtleVision explores what that experience might be like through the eyes of one of these turtles.”

The first batch of TurtleVision’s generative art NFTs dropped on Tezos NFT Marketplace fx(hash) on April 16th, 2023. While these were quickly snapped up by digital collectors, new TurtleVision NFTs are still being minted and available for purchase. Funds raised by these initial digital offerings are donated in part to The 5 Gyres Institute, a global leader in the movement against plastic pollution.

The TurtleVision team’s decision to create this laudable project here in the Tezos ecosystem is one that artists Eziraros did not make lightly. It speaks to a special alignment in approach to blockchain technology shared between himself and Tezos’ co-founders’ vision…

“I never published my work on the other chains, mainly because I knew that Tezos is a particularly energy-saving chain. That’s the reason I used Tezos for TurtleVision.”

NFTurtle Power: Tezos-Powered Digital Art Takes On An Important New Cause, image 2

While TurtleVision may not be the first (or last) philanthropic NFT-driven effort to be rolled out here in the Tezos ecosystem, it certainly is a fascinating case study into the message-spreading and fundraising power that the Tezos’ thriving digital art community has to offer.

With this community and its reach continuing to grow as 2023 takes shape (and with Tezos’ industry-leading environmental footprint in mind), it’s a safe bet that environmental causes like TurtleVision will soon be staking their claim in this space with digital art NFT releases of their own — something Casson Trenor believes could lead to significant progress in the months and years ahead…

“I believe in the power of art to do great environmental work. Art speaks to the heart, and I think that’s a great pathway to having a conversation about the environment.”

With TurtleVision’s first batch of interactive, generative NFTs now out in the wild and thriving in their new home here on the Tezos blockchain, we look forward to seeing what lies ahead for Casson, Eziraros, and the TurtleVision team in the future. (We also think turtles are pretty dain cool!)

Philanthropy, charity, and activism are all alive and well here in the Tezos ecosystem in 2023, and in this humble writer’s opinion, we’ve only just begun to scratch the surface of what this ecosystem/community can really do to make the world a cleaner, fairer, and more positive space.

Stay tuned for more!