Making a Statement About NFTs Through a Kickstarter Campaign

Can a crowdfunding campaign be art? Let’s find out.

My latest art project / Kickstarter campaign rolled into one

I wanted the campaign itself to be the art piece.

So I created a Kickstarter campaign that hawks NFTs — but physical ones. In the past, I’ve made monster-themed enamel pins, but for this campaign I wanted the campaign itself to be the art piece. In this case I’m selling a series of limited-edition, numbered, sustainably-produced wooden pins (think enamel pins, but texture-less and printed on wood), as well as Certificates of Authenticity signed by “Blockchain” (a person, not a piece of technology), and one-of-a-kind, hand-embellished versions of the main pin design.

An example of a one-of-a-kind NFT pin — mocking performative activism

Sure, it’s definitely not my place to tell you that you shouldn’t spend $10,000 on a one-of-a-kind, hand-embellished, certified wooden pin, but should you really? Really?

Why Kickstarter?

The fact that I could just sell these “physical NFTs” on my own webstore isn’t lost on me, but I think something about the relationship between crowdfunding and the hype around NFTs is especially meaningful. Perhaps it’s also that Kickstarter is a gatekeeper in it’s own right — I feel like my satirical campaign already is successful in the way that Kickstarter initially denied my campaign as it thought I was selling cryptoassets (which are currently forbidden on the platform). I had to file a formal appeal to ask them to re-evaluate it, even though I’m clearly (and repeatedly) letting people know that I’m not trying to fund digital signatures, but physical, limited-edition wooden pins.

The most currently backed pledge tier (as it’s the only one that makes any damn sense).

What the problem with NFTs really is

It’s not lost on me that I’m writing about a Kickstarter campaign, and the line between self-promotion/marketing and dissecting the campaign itself is basically non-existent. And I think that, in some ways, is part of the point.

So can a Kickstarter campaign be art?

To answer the question I posed in the subtitle, I do think that a Kickstarter campaign can be art, if at the very least, for the person creating it.

Exploring trust, leadership, art, business, skeeball, and horror fiction — Co-Founder, + Coach @ altMBA +

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