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Diving into the Third Order in Simulacra From Jean Baudrillard to the first Global NFT Cryptoart Exhibition in Shanghai

Diving into the Third Order in Simulacra From Jean Baudrillard to the first Global NFT Cryptoart Exhibition by CryptoArt.Ai in Shanghai

Diving into the Third Order in Simulacra From Jean Baudrillard to the first Global NFT Cryptoart Exhibition by CryptoArt.Ai in Shanghai

SHANGHAI, CHINA, June 8, 2021 / -- “When Nothing surfaces in signs, when Nothingness emerges at the very heart of the sign system, that is the fundamental event of art. The poetic operation is to make Nothingness rises from the power of signs – not banality or indifference towards reality but radical illusion.”

---- The Conspiracy of Art, 1996, Jean Baudrillard

In the exhibition A Realistic Shocking of the Virtual Authenticity, we could notice the growing vividity of how capable the digital art can become. When the images created by virtual space is becoming more and more ‘real’ and vibrant, when their authenticity has been transferred to the cyberspace, when the ubiquity of daily life is being transferred into the ‘online community’, we might feel a bit of anxious and worried, but more likely, we dive into the sensual realm and befuddled in the stimulations.
In Baudrillard’s Simulacra and Simulation (1994), in the third-order of simulacra, the simulated is more real than ‘the real’, and as a result, ‘the real’ is at the mercy of the simulated, not the other way around.
NASA Data Gate by Ouchhh delivered a similar concept. By collaborating with NASA, the art collective Ouchhh obtained a massive amount of cosmological data which collected by NASA. When Ouchhh reorganise and reconfigured the data and applied artificial intelligence to run it. The ‘translation’ is realised by machine learning, and presented a simulated universe trapped inside of a cube. “Can you fit in the whole universe in a simple cube?” was the question that Ouchhh asked. Kepler’s data is continuously being updated, so will one day, the collected data of the observable universe fit into the cube?

In Aimo Yang’s digital performance Consciousness Anti-body 2021, he used 6 HD projectors to project synchronised images onto the dome. The action of ‘looking up’ and the overwhelming sensation offered an a priori experience. Yang used live-generated images to provide the audience a long-gone sublime. Underneath the dome are improv dancing and jazz music jam session. The dancers are metaphorically leaping into the computer binary universe, continue living as digital avatars.

When one digital artwork has been converted to NFT, its value of exchange has been generated by using crypto technology, but its use value is almost annihilated in the physical world. The annihilation is devouring the authenticity, physicality, real-life production, modernity, and instinct. Our organism bodies are still living in the real world, but in the society consists of ‘bodies’, everything turned into simulacra.

The exhibition is organised by CryptoArt.Ai, was the first global scale NFT cryptoart exhibition held in Shanghai, and opened at May 29 2021. It caused phenomenal effect on the opening day, as NFT broke into the mainstream in the beginning of the year with controversies and discussions. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there hasn’t been a holistic and art history-based digital art exhibition globally.

The exhibition has also made several ‘first’ and records in history with 27 artists/groups and their almost 100 pieces of works. The auction record holder of digital art Beeple also presented his artwork The First 5000 Days on a massive 16 metre screen. Other renowned artists including Pak, mbsjq, and multiple emerging Chinese artists have brought their excellent and rewarded works.

Curator Du Xiyun and Qin Jianxin studied from the history of digital art, dated back the origin or digital art to 1948, when Norber Wiener published his Cybernetics: Or Control and Communication in the Animal and the Machine. When it extended its significance to the art world, it reflected as how human make influence on apparatus, or vice versa, including the interaction between human and machine and the artworks that generated/created by it. With this theory and application of contemporary technology (computer tech), we could trace back the earliest experiment on digital art, such as Laposky’s oscillogram to CGI, and then as the internet emerged, we witnessed the internet art/post-internet art, and cryptoart based on blockchain technologies.

More than seven decades of history has been condensed in one show. Curator Du Xiyun compared the shock with Robert Hugh’s book/documentary The Shock of the New. Since the beginning of impressionism, the modern/contemporary art has always been challenging the old aesthetics and discourse, we are still living inside of the aftershock. Cryptoart has an equivalent shocking value as well. It did not only shock the art medium, but most importantly, the way of art dealing and the understanding the ‘authenticity’. When artworks could be duplicated easily, how do we define the authenticity of it?

The nature of blockchain technology coincide with artwork’s ‘uniqueness’ and ‘authenticity’, which in a sense, is a decent way to protect artists’ rights. Cryptoart is not only about making shocking record in auctions, but also about the shockwave that it created in the whole artworld. The shock and reform on aesthetics and styles has just begun. In another word, cryptoart even though mostly innovative on the ‘crypto’ part now, which is the uniqueness and authenticity based on blockchain tech, but the influence will eventually impact more on the ‘art’ part of it. For the indigenous residents on the internet, they are the generation that use digital medium to create art, but with the new driven factor and momentum, digital artists will naturally push the boundaries of creativity.

Duration: 2021 May 29 – June 6
Opening: 2021 May 29 14:00
Venue: No.2380 Longteng Ave. West Bund Art Park, Tank No.1

Participated artists:
Beeple, Pak, Hackatao, Ouchhhh, Marcelo Cantu, Max Mao, Jon Noorlander, Suryanto, Jonathan Nash, Andreas, chmiel_art, marc0matic, Shindo, yellosesame, Charles Cheong, CornelSwoboda, etienecraus, Glass Grane, mbsjq
Aimo Yang, VJ Elephant, Song Ting, Wang Ke, Xin Qi

Curators: Du Xiyun, Qin Jianxin
Producers: Jin Wei, Pan Wei, Zhu Zheng
Art consultants: Wan Heng, Song Ting, Shi Ran
Exhibition organisers: Pan Chenjia, Zhi Ming