As non-fungible token (NFTs) continue their years-long pursuit of making the worst corners of the internet just a little bit worse by slapping six-figure price tags on just about the stupidest artwork this side of an Ed Hardy X Tesla collaboration, some in our society are finally stepping up to say, “Hey, has anyone noticed that this is all really fucking dumb?”
Last week, Keanu Reeves laughed at the very idea of calling a digital picture exclusive or rare, perhaps because he’s also heard of such high-level art-sleuth techniques as “copy & paste” and “screenshots.” This week, Brian Eno, known as “Old Sourpuss” in some circles and the genius behind some of the most revolutionary and original music of the 20th century in others, also took a swing at crypto art. According to Eno, who coined the term “ambient music,” co-produced Achtung Baby, and wrote Here Come The Warm Jets, NFTs are nothing more than a tool for “hustlers looking for suckers.”
“Most of the conversation I hear is asking the question, ‘What could we do with these technologies?’ which doesn’t mean ‘how could we change the world into a better place?’ but ‘How could we turn them into money?’” Eno told the blog The Crypto Syllabus.
Ultimately, while he understands “why the people who’ve done well from NFTs are pleased,” Eno doesn’t get “what is being brought into the world that makes any difference to anything other than some strings of numbers moving about in some bank accounts.”
For his part, Eno has been offered the chance to make supposedly exclusive NFTs so that he can join the likes of Beeple, Top Chef’s Tom Colicchio, and Bored Ape. But, unfortunately, “so far nothing has convinced me that there is anything worth making in that arena,” says Eno. “‘Worth making’ for me implies bringing something into existence that adds value to the world, not just to a bank account.”
Though he does think it’s sweet that “now artists can become little capitalist assholes as well,” Eno says that if he “primarily wanted to make money,” he would have a “different career as a different kind of person.” Although to be fair, Eno did apologize for his cynicism. He’s “not feeling too positive right now.” Hard to fault him for that.
[via Crypto Syllabus]