‘Making a Stronger Impact Artistically’ — An In-Depth Discussion About NFTs With System of a Down’s Serj Tankian – Interview Bitcoin News

Last month, System of a Down lead singer Serj Tankian hosted an art exhibition with the non-fungible token (NFT) platform and marketplace Curio NFT. The physical and virtual art exhibit was called “Not for Touching” and this week Tankian told Bitcoin.com News that he believes NFT technology has opened new doors for his artistic expression.

This week, Bitcoin.com News chatted with the lead singer of System of a Down (SoaD), Serj tankian, about non-fungible token (NFT) technology and how it gave him the ability to express his craft in a new way. In December, Tankian and Curio NFT organized an art exhibition featuring the artist’s NFT work titled “Not for Touching”.

Tankian has been an artist for years, but NFTs gave the SoaD frontman a new way to “affect multiple senses simultaneously” and he stressed that he was always interested in having “a stronger artistic impact”. The following is an in-depth discussion with SoaD’s Serj Tankian that Bitcoin.com News recorded on January 5.

Bitcoin.com News (BCN): You have recently entered the world of NFTs. Can you tell our readers how you found out about NFT technology?

Serj Tankian: I found out while reading the news. See how different artists came out of NFTs. We were renovating the house and I had plenty of time to read, and I was like “Wow, this is really interesting”. Since I’ve been doing art for several years, musically connected art, I thought to myself “wow, this could be a new platform for what I’m doing”. So that’s where the idea connection came into play.

BCN: Recently, you hosted an art show called “Not for Touching” with Curio NFT. Can you tell our readers about this event and how it went?

Serj Tankian: The event went very well, they set up a virtual gallery which was really interesting for me. So that I could kind of go into that gallery and see my pieces, which were NFTs of course, and be able to see them, listen to them and see the details of them. Then walk the other way and see another NFT running on another wall. It was really cool, the setup was really cool and it’s kind of my first dive into this world as an artist.

NFT Art by Serj Tankian from System of a Down.

I have always been interested in the ability to affect multiple senses simultaneously, as a way to have a stronger artistic impact. I did this with my art in music, which we call “Eye For Sound”. We use an app that does optical recognition and you walk into a physical gallery and you can listen to each of the paintings with a smartphone or headphones.

It’s like an immersive experience and with NFTs the ability to bring this painting to life using animation and digital painting. Like my good friend Roger Kupelian, who has worked on The Lord of the Rings and many films, his paintings come to life with the music in the background. So I’m really excited about it because the product is really amazing.

BCN: Do you collect other assets from specific NFT collections?

Serj Tankian: I haven’t so far. To be honest, I’m not a big collector of physical art, although I do produce physical art. I have a few paintings from a few good friends. Maybe it’s the fact that I’m sort of a minimalist. I don’t like clutter, even on a hard drive. I have a lot of friends who are collectors and they love to collect art, collect items, NFTs, and I’m just not a collector. I am an artist, I produce.

BCN: Do the other members of the System of the Down group like NFTs?

Serj Tankian: I didn’t really ask them. I’m not sure any of them bought any. I would doubt it, but maybe Shavo (SoaD bassist Shavo Odadjian), because he’s very techie and up against the other guys. So maybe Shavo, but I’m not sure.

Tankian thinks that how humans come to an agreement on perceived value is a very interesting topic. He said whether it’s gold, diamonds, NFTs or bitcoins that are valued, it’s all about subjective valuations.

BCN: Why do you think NFTs are the “next step” in terms of artistic creation?

Serj Tankian: I was saying that this statement is addressed to me. Because it gave me a new platform to be able to add a dimension of experience that I hadn’t been able to physically add. It would be crawling in virtual space so that I can move the paintings, make them dance.

Where in the physical space the paintings are on the wall and they don’t dance, but the music you walk in, which is beautiful. But now I am able to fill that space between the wall and the listener with NFTs. I can’t wait to find more spaces, virtual or physical, to be able to interact more with several senses in order to increase the power of the artist’s vision.

BCN: Besides NFTs, are you into other types of blockchain projects, such as crypto-assets such as bitcoin?

Serj Tankian: Not really. I don’t know anything about it. I’m completely naive when it comes to blockchain, bitcoin and all that. I don’t have any, for me [NFT tech] is a new world of presentation of my art, so it is my interest. But I really don’t know much about blockchain, but I have friends who bought bitcoin early on and they are very excited.

BCN: A lot of people believe that blockchain technology can remove parasitic third parties from various parts of our lives. Would you be okay with that?

Serj Tankian: I think there is certainly some truth to this. I think it’s subversive technology in a way or maybe it’s not subversive, and maybe it’s an alternative. You think of the gold standard and how silver was based on gold. Then they gave up on the gold standard because they couldn’t find enough gold. They have extended beyond that, so most of the currencies are based on the integrity of the government of that nation.

With blockchain and bitcoin, you are outside of this system. For me the whole thing is very interesting, NFT included, because the human character accepting to value things in a specific way is very interesting.

BCN: Do you plan to do other NFT exhibitions with your works?

Serj Tankian: I do. But I want to find the next level. I would love to do a physical gallery or museum exhibit, where there are these physically isolated spaces for each of my paintings and you create even more of this virtual encounter with the physical world. Where you can interact with the multiple dimensions of art which include painting, certainly the music around you, maybe tactile and olfactory elements, lighting and bringing the virtual world into that. Maybe the NFTs could be projected, in real space I’m starting to think about multiple dimensions and increasing the power of the artistic effect.

Tags in this story

Don’t Touch, Activist, Art, Artist, Crypto, Curio NFT, Digital Currencies, Headphones, Interview, nft, NFT Art, NFT Collection, NFT Collections, NFT System of a Down, NFT Tech, NFT, Non-fungible Token, paintings, Serj Tankian, Shavo Odadjian, singer, Smartphone, SoaD, bassist SoaD, singer SoaD, System of a Down, System of a Down NFT, singer

What do you think of our interview with Serj Tankian from System of a Down? What do you think of his description of NFT technology? Let us know what you think of this topic in the comments section below.

Jamie redman

Jamie Redman is Head of News at Bitcoin.com News and a FinTech journalist living in Florida. Redman has been an active member of the cryptocurrency community since 2011. He is passionate about Bitcoin, open source code, and decentralized applications. As of September 2015, Redman has written over 5,000 articles for Bitcoin.com News on the disruptive protocols emerging today.




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