Lisa Slominski and Nick Dehadray, the co-founders of Moon Landing, a new initiative for neurodiversity in the nonfungible tokens (NFT) space, have discussed their upcoming NFT auction supporting contemporary artists with intellectual disabilities and the nonprofit studio they work from.
It has been reported that the key theme of the pieces is that of pop culture and nostalgia, intertwined with moments of struggle and perseverance from the artists’ everyday lives.
However, the collection is called NFToons, which can be previewed now and will be available for public auction starting in January 2022.
Slominski said that the first project is NFToons, which is eight artists who are working with Project Onward, which is a nonprofit in Chicago that supports artists with varying intellectual disabilities and social needs.
“Out of these eight artists, one of them is this wonderful artist named Ruby Bradford. I've curated exhibitions with her before, and her practice is based a lot around Superman and cats, associating both of those with caring and belonging. So, for NFToons, we really took one of her iconic paintings of Superman as a cat and then animated it, moving it off the screen, and she actually sings the soundtrack to the .mp4 NFT, where she is doing a cat rendition of the Superman theme song. So, that is one example.”
The report said that she named another artist Louis Demarco, who actually got one of his drawings back there as well.
“But he makes really interesting works that are called “Words to Live By.” He makes a lot of tech space work based on mantras he tells himself. What he also did is develop his own screenplay, like in a band. He developed a concept for a TV show called Toasters, and it’s his own mash-up of Friends and Cheers. He’s created a pilot episode, which we will promote on Twitter and Instagram, so anyone can watch. His NFT is his drawing of the set of two of the characters’ apartments. And he also made his own soundtrack to the TV show. So, that’s the audio on that one.”
Likewise, Slominski noted that the charity is their studio. All of these artists work at a day art studio, Project Onward. Project Onward is a nonprofit 501(c) (3) [a legal United States federal income tax-exempt nonprofit entity] charity in Chicago that supports these artists with disabilities. So, 80% of the sales will go back into that studio and to the artists.
“Moon Landing plans for each project to be a collaboration with a nonprofit studio that supports artists with disabilities, where we work with their artists creating NFTs and the proceeds go to the artists and studios. Our second project will be with the studio Arts Project Australia in Melbourne. I've sort of worked in the larger field of neurodiversity contemporary art for three years. I used to work solely in contemporary art, and I worked for an organization here in London which is called Museum of Everything. They look at what a lot of people refer to as “outsider art,” which is a problematic term, but it often includes some kind of artists with disabilities, artists that are self-taught, artists from marginalized positions. Anyway, after coming out of there and starting to work on my sort of independent project, I really found I was exposed to some artists through those positions that had disabilities. I just found the artwork to be absolutely incredible coming out of these studios.”
Moreover, Dehadray said that he thought what he saw was really the way the NFT space was supporting self-taught artists and that it was a really strong community around that, and still is. So, according to him, he thought it really fit into this type of work, of neurodiverse artists teaching themselves and creating art for the enjoyment of others.
“It seems to really make sense that NFTs could be a really great space for them to sell it, whereas I think in the contemporary art market, they don’t really set these prices that high. So, they might get a better chance from making their work in the NFT space. We are going to go through it as an auction via OpenSea. So, the minting will be done by the people purchasing, and we will be doing it on Ethereum for this one, but we have also considered other currencies like Polygon, where there are no gas fees on Lightspeed. But at the moment, Ethereum still has a bigger share of uses. So, it seems to make sense to go with that one at the moment.”
Thus, he stated that there are really good opportunities to empower artists to use technology they otherwise wouldn’t consider using or have access to.