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I pivoted my art business to NFTs. It went so much worse than I’d imagined

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I first heard about NFTs in May 2021, when I was working as a graphic designer for Saturday Night Live. We were filming a sketch starring Pete Davidson as Eminem — a parody of the song “Without Me” with the lyrics, “Now what the hell’s an NFT?”

What was a non-fungible token? Were digital art files finally worth real money? My interest was piqued.

To make an NFT, you coin – or mint – it onto a blockchain – a digital public record powered by computers. Some blockchains — like Ethereum — guzzled energy and leave large carbon footprints.

This gave me pause. Outside of SNL, I create video art with found objects. I’m meticulous about my eco practices, carefully hoarding and upcycling trash. I even use old dental floss to rig and spin my loot for the camera (I waste a little water washing the plaque off). I know it’s not much in the grand scheme of planet-saving, but it helps me sleep at night.

I loved the idea of becoming part of the NFT art movement at the moment of its inception. Like Magritte’s floating apples and pipes, I wanted my little trash sculptures…

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