Objkt.com in Conversation with Fakewhale on Past, Present And Future
Since its inception, Objkt.com has positioned itself at the vanguard of integrating artistic creativity with the ever-evolving blockchain technology — a unique convergence that has led to the blurring of traditional roles, where artists and collectors engage in an active, shared ecosystem. More than just a marketplace, Objkt.com has become a nexus of digital creativity and hub for curatorial endeavors, fostering community engagement and pushing the boundaries of traditional art spaces.
In the following conversation with Fakewhale, co-founder Brian shares the personal experiences and industry insights that have shaped the platform’s development to this day, for a comprehensive view on the past, present and future of the marketplace.
Additionally, the conversation touches upon the synergy between Objkt.com and Fakewhale in light of a coordinated release soon to be revealed for the launch of their newest feature, Objkt Galleries.
Co-Founder Brian McAlister in Conversation with Fakewhale
Fakewhale: Could you share about your personal background? What was the initial vision when creating Objkt.com, and how has that vision evolved with the platform’s growth? Was there a moment or decision that was pivotal in shaping the direction of Objkt.com?
Brian McAlister: Initially, we developed objkt out of necessity. There was no way to make offers on hic et nunc, a then popular Tezos-based NFT platform. This limitation highlighted a gap in the Tezos ecosystem—a lack of a comprehensive NFT marketplace that could cater to the community’s needs.
The pivotal moment in shaping Objkt.com came when we attempted to integrate the offer mechanism into hic et nunc. Unfortunately, this integration failed, but it was a blessing in disguise. It pushed us to think bigger and led us to the decision to build our own marketplace.
The vision for objkt has always centered on creating the best tools for artists and collectors in the NFT space. As we evolved, we recognized the importance of curators in the art ecosystem, leading us to broaden our focus to include this vital role. Today, our mission is to democratize art access, aiming to bring art to everyone. We strive to foster a vibrant community where artists, collectors, and curators can thrive, driven by innovative technology and a deep commitment to the arts. Objkt is not just a marketplace; it’s a platform that empowers and connects the art world on the Tezos blockchain.
Fakewhale: Objkt.com is unique in that artists are often collectors themselves. How does this dynamic shape the platform, and what approaches or philosophies do you believe have been most effective in building and nurturing this community?
Brian McAlister: The unique artist/collector dynamic shapes the platform into a community of mutual support and patronage. It fosters a culture where members not only create but also invest in each other’s work, reinforcing the importance of patronage in the arts. We steer away from hype and speculation; instead, we focus on creating an environment where artists can thrive and sustainably make a living. This approach has been instrumental in nurturing a community that values artistic growth and genuine appreciation over short-term gains, encouraging a healthy ecosystem for both creators and collectors.
Fakewhale: How do you perceive the impact of digital art on the broader art and cultural landscape? In what ways do you think platforms like Objkt.com are influencing this shift?
Brian McAlister: I think the impact is massive. It’s revolutionizing how we create, share, and experience art, breaking down traditional barriers and democratizing access. Platforms like objkt play a significant role in this shift. By providing a space for artists to showcase and sell their work online, these platforms are empowering creators and introducing a global audience to a new realm of artistic expression. The accessibility and innovation offered by such platforms are not only elevating digital art but also reshaping the cultural narrative, making art more inclusive and diverse. This evolution signifies a major turning point in how we perceive and value art in the digital age.
Fakewhale: What personal insights or experiences have you gained while operating Objkt.com, and have these changed your perspective on art and technology?
Brian McAlister: Operating Objkt.com has been an enlightening and rewarding journey. Building a good product has proven to be much more challenging than anticipated, requiring continuous innovation and dedication. My belief that art is for everyone has not only been affirmed but also vividly demonstrated on objkt. The platform’s ability to connect diverse artists and audiences is truly inspiring. Additionally, as a user of objkt myself, I am continually amazed by the incredible art created by our community. This personal experience with the platform enriches my appreciation for the dynamic interplay of art and technology and their collective power to democratize and transform the art world.
Fakewhale: Having experienced both highs and lows in the digital art market, how do you perceive the current state of the market, and what strategies does Objkt.com employ to adapt to these fluctuations?
Brian McAlister: We understand that market dynamics are important and require attention, but we also recognize that they can be a massive distraction if overly emphasized, so we try to take a balanced approach. Our strategy is to not focus too much on these fluctuations. Instead, we prioritize nurturing non-hype and patronage-based transactions. By doing so, we believe we can sustainably grow and support our community regardless of the market cycle.
Fakewhale: You’re currently working on a coordinated launch for Objkt Galleries involving Fakewhale. Can you share some details about this initiative and how it aligns with Objkt.com’s long-term goals?
Brian McAlister: Curation is a critical aspect of the digital art ecosystem, helping to elevate and highlight quality and meaningful works. Our collaboration with Fakewhale is part of our commitment to encourage and support excellent curation, providing tools and platforms that empower curators to showcase and promote art effectively.
Additionally, this initiative underscores the importance of on-chain provenance in the digital art world. At objkt, we are dedicated to maintaining the integrity and authenticity of artworks. objkt Galleries are entirely on-chain, ensuring transparency and provenance.
Fakewhale: How will this initiative with Fakewhale influence your ongoing curatorial strategy, particularly in blending diverse artistic expressions and fostering a platform that resonates with both emerging and established digital artists?
Brian McAlister: The initiative with Fakewhale reinforces our ongoing commitment to diverse artistic expression on objkt. By collaborating with entities like Fakewhale, we enhance our curatorial strategy, ensuring that our platform remains a dynamic space that equally resonates with both emerging and established digital artists. This partnership will help us continue to showcase a wide range of artistic styles and voices, fostering an inclusive and vibrant community. It also reinforces our dedication to elevating digital art and supporting artists in their creative endeavors, reinforcing objkt’s role as a leading platform in the digital art world.
Fakewhale: With the increasing advancements in blockchain and technologies, how do you foresee Objkt.com adapting and evolving in the next few years? What is next, and what role do you envision for Objkt.com in the future of digital art curation?
Brian McAlister: Objkt is dedicated to bringing art to everyone, positioning itself to be one of the main players in the digital art world. By simplifying the user experience and lowering the barriers to entry, we aim to make digital art more approachable for a wider audience, opening up opportunities for people from diverse backgrounds to engage with and appreciate digital art.
Objkt Galleries: An in-depth look
An innovative tool, Objkt Galleries marks a major breakthrough in digital art presentation and distribution technologies. At its core, it is a system that leverages smart contracts, tailoring a unique ecosystem where artists, collectors, curators, and galleries collaboratively thrive in a permissionless environment — A feature that underscores a cohesive blend of historical and newly minted tokens, redefining the curation of digital exhibitions.
Central to Objkt Galleries is its transparent fee and royalty system, a key feature that fosters openness and trust. As artists and collectors engage with the platform, they encounter a clear, upfront display of any applicable sales fees, ensuring informed decisions backed by the reliability of smart contracts.
Beyond simplifying transactions, Objkt Galleries addresses a crucial market gap: facilitating sales of high-value tokens through curated exhibitions. This feature is particularly advantageous for collectors who possess valuable tokens but lack the network or inclination to independently find buyers. Galleries can now facilitate these sales, tapping into both newly minted works, and most importantly, into the extensive repository of the past works of art on Tezos.
The introduction of ‘Open Invitations’ further enhances the platform’s inclusivity. This feature allows galleries to extend targeted invitations for specific tokens or collections, effectively broadening participation in the digital art scene. As a result of these invitations, including detailed selling conditions, Objkt Galleries further democratizes exhibition participation, for a more dynamic,inclusive art scene.
Enhancing the user experience, the platform boasts a customizable gallery page, rich in branding and personalization options. This feature, coupled with comprehensive gallery statistics and the ability to manage numerous FA2 contracts, empowers galleries with unprecedented control and insight. Exhibition pages, too, are customizable, allowing for a cohesive narrative around each curated collection and providing valuable exhibition-level statistics.
Collaboration lies at the heart of Objkt Galleries, facilitated by a flexible permission system. This system enables galleries to work seamlessly with both internal and external curators, defining specific roles and fee structures. Roles within Objkt Galleries are strategically defined to ensure efficient operation: from admins and gallerists to curators, artists, and token holders, each role is crafted to enhance collaboration and streamline the digital art curation and distribution process. Likewise, the variety in minting options – from unique 1/1s to limited and open editions – adds to the platform’s versatility.
Initially, Objkt Galleries is set to launch in an invite-only phase, a selective approach integral to establishing a solid foundation for the platform. As the platform evolves, it will transition to a public phase, opening up opportunities for a wider audience to engage with and create their own digital galleries.
In parallel, a significant development is underway for the objkt.one platform, set to undergo a comprehensive integration into the Objkt Galleries system, becoming its own distinct gallery.
Objkt Galleries Feature Summary:
Smart Contract System: Tailoring an ecosystem for collaborative curation of digital exhibitions.
Transparent Fee and Royalty System: Providing clarity on sales fees to all parties.
Facilitating Sales of High-Value Tokens: Addressing market gaps for collectors without extensive networks.
‘Open Invitations’ Feature: Democratizing participation in digital art exhibitions.
Customizable Gallery and Exhibition Pages: Offering rich branding and narrative opportunities.
Flexible Permission System: Enabling collaboration with diverse curator roles.
Variety in Minting Options: including 1/1s, limited editions, open editions, generative art (1/1/x) (limited + open editions) and more.
Evolution and Accessibility: Initially invite-only, with plans for public expansion and integration with objkt.one.