The goal of Ja Rule and business partner Herb Rice's new Web3 company, Painted House, was to elevate Black NFT artists to the forefront of the online art community. To that goal, a group of Black NFT artists stood on the stoop of a New York brownstone between Fifth and Madison Avenues in June to draw attention to Black creators in the digital art industry and to inspire upcoming artists to explore the non-fungible tokens medium.
The artists arrived and sat down in the same spot where, more than 60 years before, a group of jazz musicians from Harlem got together for what would become an iconic photograph and the inspiration for the Oscar-nominated documentary film, "A Great Day in Harlem." Rappers were the focus of the stoop's black artists spotlight in 1998, and some of them went on to become Hip Hop icons.
Manouschka Guerrier coordinated the most recent photo, which drew some veteran rappers who were already aware of the technology's possibilities. Hip-hop legends who were early adopters of the NFT movement, such Jay Z and most famously Snoop Dogg, attended.
Guerrier was on the scene first and frequently the only person with black skin at glamorous gatherings for the online community. This made her wonder if there were any opportunities for minorities in the NFT sector.
However, she eventually understood "the space's potential for decentralization and ownership, and the way it could open up a world where artists create freely, reveal their work to the public, and earn directly without the need for penny-pinching intermediaries," according to TIME.
Then, after going to the 2022 NFT NYC, she came up with the concept for the picture.
Rapper Ja Rule wanted to draw attention to the possibilities available to Black artists in the developing digital art market. Linking NFTs to the iconic images illustrates how this new form of art has the ability to transform artists' life, much like jazz and hip-hop did for earlier artists. Before discussing the symbolism of following in the footsteps of Harlem jazz and hip-hop greats, the rapper praised Manouschka Guerrier for organizing the photo session.
These were youthful pioneers who were rebelliously blazing a trail and telling the world, "We're here and this is something to pay attention to," when you consider the original photograph and what it meant. Fast-forward to us reinventing the image of a daring new musical genre that was written off by everyone and becoming the dominant one in the hip-hop scene. The energy was the same back then. Now fast-forward to Web3's glorious day. You will experience art via our eyes and vision, and you won't be able to control it, we are claiming. That is a unique time in jazz, Web3, and art.
The mission of The Painted House is to empower Black digital artists and educate Black Americans about blockchain and We3 technology. Because of this, 10% of the money made from the sale of the NFTs will go to historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs), who will use it to support students' Web3 education. Ja Rule will also donate money to the colleges along with his live-streaming entertainment marketplace, ICONN Media.
"We entered the Web3 NFT area a year ago after attending the annual NFT NYC for the first time," Herb Rice said in a statement to Insider when asked about their motivation for starting the project. Although it was cozy and sociable, no one of color was present. More persons of color were sought in the area.
They therefore decided on the artist to produce the art after collaborating with the NFT launchpad platform, House of First.
1000 NFTs were made available by painted House as part of their debut project and drop. Every Non-fungible token "is a striking picture of the real feelings of Black Americans negotiating both the joys and hardships of everyday life in America," according to the creators.
Despite being sold out, the collection is still accessible on the OpenSea NFT store. The collection has more than 340 distinct owners, a 52 Ethereum volume, and a floor price of 0.19 Ethereum.
Owners of the digital assets will get access to exclusive content, like a unique painting by artist Nick Davis that depicts Black life, invitations to NFT events, blockchain training, and a download of Ja Rule's newest album.
Young Nick Davis first created drawings. But he didn't begin dabbling with digital art on his wife's Ipad until his epilepsy rendered him unable to work. As he gained proficiency in computer-generated art, he came to the conclusion that he wanted to depict Black Americans' daily life.
He battles despair and anxiety with his paintings. He wants to express his love and respect for his community through his art, and he says that "despite the situation of the world right now, your Black is unimaginably beautiful."
We wholeheartedly support Ja Rule in his endeavors. Artists who embrace this new art form may very possibly become famous and wealthy, just like the pioneers of hip-hop and jazz in Harlem before them.
Finally, the initiative launched by Ja Rule and his business partner Herb Rice to promote black NFT musicians will prosper over the long term because of the charitable component that promotes education in these cutting-edge technologies. Historically Black Colleges being endowed will only boost minority participation in the field.
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