Across the board, our existing creative economies aren’t working for creators. Capitalism teaches consumers to think about value using a complicated formula of usefulness, desirability, availability, and so on. But with art, music, and lots of other creative offerings—many of which don’t fit within capitalism’s product-pricing formula—value becomes muddy.
We need new ways to think about “value,” especially as it relates to creative labor.
This August, we’re inviting creators to hack, subvert, and manipulate the value of creative work. Cryptocurrency makes it possible to completely reimagine our creative economies, so that creative labor and output can be sold, traded, and owned in all sorts of experimental ways.
Too often, creative economies rely on intermediaries or outdated systems to determine the value of an artist’s work. On top of that, creators are often the last to get paid, and are regularly asked to front capital to fund new work, with no promise for future payment—despite the fact that their creativity is what drives the whole machine. It’s time to divest from parasitic creative economies.
You have a following who cares about what you make, but how many of them have ever had the opportunity to invest in your work directly? When your community collects your work, their early support can uplift its value directly—and in turn, they can share in your financial success. With this kind of participatory creative economy, we move towards a more sustainable ecosystem where co-created prosperity is possible.
Your work is dynamic, experimental, and collaborative. The way you distribute and monetize it can be, too. The current options of selling through your own online shop, a gallery, or a retail store—or, even through a crowdfunding or subscription-based model—leave little room for creative experimentation and subversion. With the internet, the rules of art-making have become infinitely flexible, and funding mechanisms for creators should follow suit.
For the last decade, crypto has operated outside of the mainstream and made a subset of in-the-know technologists very, very wealthy. Now, we need to expand access to decentralized technologies. It’s time for creators to blow open the possibilities of the crypto space, and imagine a future that’s driven less by profiteering and more by creativity and ingenuity.
To participate in NEW VALUES, reach out to us here with your idea for a limited-edition artwork, good, or experience before the end of August.
We’ll feature drops across our newsletters, on our site, and on social media throughout the month. Stay tuned for updates and inspiration from NEW VALUES creators, including a curated group drop coming up mid-month.