AI enables NFT artist Ellie Pritts to exhibit at Bitforms gallery in NYC.

AI enables NFT artist Ellie Pritts to exhibit at Bitforms gallery in NYC.

Exploring the Intersection of Art, Technology, and Blockchain

This month, Los Angeles-based nonfungible token (NFT) artist Ellie Pritts is celebrating “In the Screen I am Everything,” her first solo show in New York City — and her first time taking over pioneering net art gallery Bitforms. Eight animations from the technicolor exhibition are available to mint as NFTs on Ethereum, displayed on screens alongside a few physical prints. The multilayered process Pritts used for all three series on view unites them across media.

Pritts broke onto the NFT scene in 2021 when she tried minting a few existing video artworks — and watched them take off. Her video practice had been mostly therapeutic, but suddenly the blockchain boom made her work valuable enough to fund the acquisition of new tools, which Pritts used to make more sophisticated video artwork.

The Rise of Nonfungible Tokens (NFTs)

Nonfungible tokens (NFTs) have revolutionized the art world, providing artists like Pritts with new opportunities to monetize their work. NFTs are unique digital assets that represent ownership of a piece of digital content, such as artwork, music, or videos. Unlike cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin or Ethereum, which are fungible and interchangeable, each NFT is distinct and cannot be replicated. This scarcity and uniqueness make NFTs highly valuable and sought after by collectors.

NFTs are typically built on blockchain networks, most commonly Ethereum. The blockchain serves as a decentralized ledger that records and verifies the ownership and provenance of NFTs. This technology ensures the authenticity and traceability of digital assets, addressing the long-standing challenges of copyright infringement and art forgery in the digital realm.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) and the Creative Process

Pritts’s artistic journey took an unexpected turn when she was diagnosed with a degenerative neurological condition. Faced with the loss of her abilities as a cellist and painter, she turned to artificial intelligence (AI) as a means of expression. Her show at Bitforms showcases the fusion of AI and art, pushing the boundaries of creativity.

In her artwork “Relative Minor,” Pritts utilizes AI to generate a trippy animation based on text prompts from her dream journals. By feeding the AI model with her subconscious thoughts and themes, she creates archetypal faces that challenge conventional beauty standards. The animation is then processed through video hardware from the 1990s, resulting in visually warped outputs. Pritts’s exploration of AI as a tool for self-expression highlights the transformative power of technology in the creative process.

Exploring Nature and Technology through Glitch Art

Pritts’s exhibition also features her “Fleur Glitch” series, where she combines footage of cut flowers with digital abstractions. Through glitch art, Pritts juxtaposes the beauty of nature with the artificiality of computerized visuals. The resulting animations and prints create shifting portals into alluring digital voids. By incorporating digital elements into traditional art forms, Pritts challenges the boundaries between the physical and digital worlds.

The Empowering Potential of AI and Blockchain

The show’s final room showcases Pritts’s surreal scenes displayed on framed screens, creating a captivating and immersive experience. Through AI and manual edits, Pritts explores her own identity and self-perception. By feeding the AI model with visual and text prompts, she discovers new dimensions of herself and her art. The use of blockchain technology not only helped Pritts gain recognition and income through NFTs but also sustains her continued exploration of AI. The combination of these technologies enables Pritts to manifest a regal self that once felt impossible.

The intersection of art, technology, AI, and blockchain opens up a world of possibilities for artists like Pritts. The transparent and decentralized nature of blockchain ensures the integrity and authenticity of digital art, while AI provides new tools for creative expression. As these technologies continue to evolve, artists will have unprecedented opportunities to push the boundaries of their craft and redefine the art world.

In conclusion, Pritts’s exhibition at Bitforms showcases the transformative power of blockchain, AI, and glitch art in the realm of digital art. By leveraging these technologies, Pritts has found new avenues for self-expression and monetization. Her journey exemplifies the potential of blockchain and AI to revolutionize the art industry and offers a glimpse into the future of creative exploration.

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