Power of art collaborations: new voices, new platforms and new opportunities

The best things in art happen in-between. Between reality and imagination, between past and future,  between the genuine and the artificial, between precise attention to current events and and the crossing of time boundaries. And in any case between people. 

These are collaborations that are based not on the similarity of approaches, but, on the contrary, those that merge different methods and techniques reshape the borders and open new opportunities both for artists and art itself. VC STATEMENT UKRAINE Crypto Art Drop, an initiative that brings together world-renowned crypto artists with leading contemporary Ukrainian artists, shows how fruitful collaboration can be.

It’s at the core of art to find borders and overcome them both in a serious or playful manner, always provoking thoughts and emotions. VC STATEMENT UKRAINE Crypto Art Drop, a part of STATEMENT UKRAINE project at viennacontemporary art fair, discovers how contemporary art can benefit from the revolutionary crypto world and vice versa. 16 artists have formed 8 duos, where one person has expertise in crypto art and the other in contemporary art. Different backgrounds, methods and styles do not dissolve, but enrich each other.

«I have already done a few collaborations with traditional artists that happened to also be doing cryptoart — artists like Hackatao, Martin Lukas Ostachowski or Mattia Cuttini for ex. — so the process came naturally to me when it came to collaborating with Julia. Her work has a strong digital base too, so it was not hard to tune our frequencies about the workflow and so on,» says Oficinas TK, who works together with Julia Beliaeva

Contemporary Ukrainian artist Julia Beliaeva’s practice is always looking for ways in which technology affects us and our consciousness, and how the latest technology can meaningfully complement and update traditional media. Oficinas TK also studied traditional media prior to a career in cryptoart, so formulating a shared artistic statement in collaboration with Julia Beliaeva was a forward-looking practice for both of them.

“Siren” Oficinas TK and Julia Beliaeva

Oleksiy Sai, another artistic participant from Ukraine, says he finds his inspiration in mixing cutting-edge technologies with outdated ones. «Working with an artist who works with artificial intelligence is a great pleasure. I liked it.  The unique thing about this collaboration is that I deliberately use so-called “outdated” technologies, and my pair – the latest, but our own heads work synchronously.  That inspires me,» says Sai. 

“Squeeze” — Oleksiy Sai and Bard Ionson

Ukrainian artist Sai is well known for his installations, objects, and Excel-art series. In VC STATEMENT UKRAINE Crypto Art Drop he collaborates with Bard Ionson, who is «fascinated with the space between the physical sensory, electronic and spiritual worlds and the distortions that happen upon passing between them», as mentioned at the artist’s website

What will grow out of these collaborative projects? We will see soon, as NFT for VC STATEMENT UKRAINE Crypto Art Drop will be released on objkt during the September 9-11, 2022 auction.

However, what we already know from talking to all involved – artists, institutions, platforms, partners – is that this project goes much deeper than just art for art’s sake, as Ukrainian and international artists combine their efforts to draw more attention to the cruel Russian invasion of Ukraine and raise money for charity initiatives in Ukraine. And certainly this background influences the artists’ actions, whether it is implicit or explicit in the artworks. 

This initiation of joint artistic projects to give voice to urgent social issues, such as opposition to the war currently turning the European present into a new era, was the concern of the viennacontemporary team with all the participants of the VC STATEMENT UKRAINE Crypto Art Drop: the result has already exceeded our expectations on many levels.

«As the power by violence has drawn lines in the minds of the many it is the responsibility for those that abhor these developments to draw new lines that transcend divisions. Through collaboration and alignments, we have the potential to heal the traumas of our time. These gestures need not be on a grand scale. In fact, I believe it is the smaller ripples across time that have an even greater impact. Our collaboration is a simple exchange of personal symbols and sounds. A small journey through a mental corridor. A message towards the future of hope and understanding,» comments Ilan Katin.

“Revive” — Ilan Katin and Kateryna Zavoloka

Ilan Katin, who makes non-figurative drawings both in digital and material forms, cooperates with Kateryna Zavoloka, whose work includes performances, creating music and visual arts. For both artists collaborating is a part of their practice, but viennacontemporary’s Crypto Art Drop is the first time they unite for creating NFT-art piece.

«We are excited about the creative process we are privileged to see. Artists from different contexts show that there is nothing impossible for art, they find new ways to share their ideas and inspire all of us. Such collaborations are a nice way to learn, try new media, get new platforms for one’s art, and find new spaces to be heard. It’s important that Crypto Art Drop is itself a result of collaboration, as the initiative became possible thanks to viennacontemporary and the crypto community: MoCA, 0x4rt, Tezos. We are proud to hold Crypto Art Drop in support of Ukraine, bringing more awareness to what is happening as well as raising funds to support Ukrainian culture,» states Olha Stoliarchuk, Crypto Art Drop lead.

As we know, the best things in art happen in-between. And the most important among them is what happens when art meets its audience. Check the NFTs created for the Crypto Art Drop and join the auction on September 9–11, 2022 on objkt.

Crypto Art Drop includes works of Sparrow and Anna Kostritskaya ,  Oficinas TK and Julia Beliaeva, Ilan Katin and Kateryna Zavoloka , Gala Mirissa and Max Kilderov,  Bard Ionson and Oleksiy Sai,  Angie Taylor and Vlada Ralko, Gary Cartlidge and Oleksiy Ivanyuk,  Shortcut and  Dmytro Fedorenko

“Somnus” Angie Taylor and Vlada Ralko
Gary Cartlidge & Oleksiy Ivaniuk, A Fray of Morality
Sparrow and Anna Kostritskaya, Unbreakable People

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