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Gagosian’s Former Digital Lead Is Spearheading a ‘Safe and Welcoming’ NFT Marketplace With a Focus on Generative Art

The fortunes of digital collectibles continue to be tumultuous with each of the cryptocurrency market’s plunges and surges, but as any Art Blocks owner will tell you, the fine art NFT space is thriving in terms of collectors’ interest and appreciation. It holds a strong position.Evidence is not free Global art market share NFT or institutional embrace However, the number of platforms selling blockchain art is skyrocketing.

tonic is the latest to enter the market, promising a “safe and welcoming space” for both crypto natives and newcomers to discover and collect fine art NFTs.Gallery on January 26th kick off call backed by Founding team of heavyweights in the art world.

Susannah Maybank, former head of digital at Gagosian, and Mariam Naficy, founder of design marketplace Minted, serve as Tonic’s CEO and chairman, respectively.Their founding partners are not limited Designers Yves Behar and Brigitte Romanek, architect India Madhavi and venture capitalist Britt Morin. Ariel Hudes, president of Pace Verso, joins the board of directors.

Mariam Nafisi. Photo: Elizabeth Fall. Courtesy of Tonic.

Such a diverse group is meant to capture different perspectives and tastes in Tonic’s direction and curation, Maybank told Artnet News.

“We have an ongoing conversation with people from the traditional art world to those who are deeply rooted in the Web3 community,” she said. “This is crowdsourced information. We want to make sure it not only reflects our own aesthetic choices, but also represents multiple voices and diversity in artists and aesthetics.” increase.

The platform is currently focused on generative art, Maybank adds: I would like to talk to artists working in various mediums. “

print from Chromesthesia: Ascend By Jaime Dillinger painted on the spot. Photo credit: Tonic.

On January 31st, Tonic will launch the Genesis Collection, a series of ‘Generative Art’.Chromestesia: Ascend” By artist Jaime Derringer (who is also Tonic’s Community Head). To explore the experience of color perception, where colors are evoked in response to auditory stimuli, Derringer applies algorithmic disruption, coded to mimic MIDI controllers, to original works on paper and digital paintings. bottom. The result is a pastel abstraction that retains painterly depth and movement while being manipulated by AI.

According to Naficy, this handcrafted effect is key to Tonic’s wider project that bridges the digital and physical. As such, each collection includes not only his NFTs, but also print editions. “We veered toward selecting artists who we thought had hand marks on their work,” she told her Artnet News. “We felt it would print very well, too.” rice field.”

For Naficy, a hybrid release like this could provide an effective entry point for traditional Web2 collectors looking for “physicality” in their digital purchases. This is where his Maybank experience in building Gagosian’s online sales channel comes in handy.

“A very flat image doesn’t always get to the truth and roots of art,” she said, explaining the insight gained in her previous role. “It’s not just about having an artist tell a story and put it on video, but putting that image in place so that collectors can see it in their homes and understand what it’s like to live with it. There are things we can do.”

Tonic plans to make Web3 transactions even easier with credit card payments, an interim wallet service, and an elaborate concierge to hand newcomers to the space.

print from Chromesthesia: Ascend By Jaime Dillinger painted on the spot. Photo courtesy of Christiane Lemieux.

In its purpose and audience, Tonic hopes to join the crowd of other NFT platforms, from Pace Verso to Particle, to bring traditional collectors on board. But Naficy also recognizes the potential to turn NFT buyers into art collectors. NFT’s fine art segment has grown to her $1.3 billion in sales in the first three quarters of 2022, she notes.

“I think there’s been a lot of momentum in this space around new collectors, just engagement and excitement for this part of the market,” she said..

Community engagement and education, which are the cornerstones of the services Tonic provides, are essential to such efforts, not only for collectors to learn about crypto art and artists, but also to get to know fellow collectors, Naficy said. says. “It should be a pretty social experience,” she noted.

“Growing up a new generation of art collectors is actually very important. “I mean, a new generation, a new collector.”

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