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by Vini Naso
‘Kodama’ are spirits in Japanese folklore that inhabit trees and have long been believed to protect their natural habitat. In this series that has already received attention from international art prizes to top creative entrepreneurs and collectors, I have reinterpreted Kodama as digital spirits for the metaverse.
I have reinterpreted Kodama as digital spirits for the metaverse.
About The Artist:
I am a digital artist exploring how notions of beauty and visual identity are expanding in the digital age. I mix influences from past mythology, folk art, and sci-fi to create something time-agnostic and perhaps a little uncomfortable. Working in a purely digital medium allows me the freedom to explore ideas, shapes, materials and textures that aren’t constrained by the limitations of the physical world. I am interested in how digital technologies we use today extend our realities into the realm of fantasy and will help shape posthuman aesthetics. Old notions of identity bind us less when our humanity isn’t necessarily attached to traditional human form.
Kodama -San is the Winner of the 2020 Beautiful Bizarre Digital Art Award
About the Series:
In my art, I’m always interested in bridging the ancient and the new to extend our realities. My aim with these digital portraits was not simply to reimagine these mythical creatures, but to underscore our union with nature. Although these portraits convey a character’s outline, their facial features or identities have been taken over by intricate foliage to highlight the symbiosis between fauna and flora. Humankind’s innate biological connection with nature transcends the physical plane, and I believe that we’ll continue to gravitate towards biophilic aesthetics even in our digital worlds.
While creating this series in the midst of pandemic lockdown and seeing the world change so rapidly around me, I found myself longing to reconnect more deeply with nature. For me, this series is a contemplative space akin to a shinto shrine for the metaverse. A space that is less focused on worship, rather a place for safekeeping of what is most sacred and important. When translated into crypto art, I hope that my anxieties around climate change and the fate of our planet can inspire others to contemplate on our reliance and union with nature.
This series is especially relevant in times when the sustainability footprint of crypto art has been put into question. It is important for me to highlight that a percentage of the proceeds from this series will be donated to The Gold Standard carbon offset projects.