Academy Retrospect 2021-2022

Yet another school year has passed at my local art academy in Sint-Niklaas (Belgium).

This year I have been focusing mostly on working on my ‘March 2 Infinities - Landscapes’ art series and I began to explore the new ‘Transhumanists’ art series.

Art is created using either traditional media like charcoal / oil paintings or using purely digital means. Combinations of both occur as well. Computer AI is used sometimes to generate new reference materials based upon existing own works.

It are definitely exciting times as an artist to explore and find new creative paths.

Transhumanist - Drawing WIP
Transhumanist - Drawing WIP

March 2 Infinity - Landscapes

“The March to Infinity had departed. Will Humanity make the right choices?"

Story

Within this art series I explore the impact of technology on the future of mankind - which has made itself nearly gods by applying extensions onto their own bodies & souls.

M2I TRADQAN
M2I TRADQAN

Earth however is rampaged by centuries of exploitation and technology misusages. The lucky (wealthy) ones fled to the stars and left this barren world ages ago. The unfortunates, who were left behind, are roaming the lands in search of huge black stones which should contain the information to reach the skies and the technologies to upgrade their wrecked bodies. Or at least that’s what the prophecies claim.

Eons have since then passed …

M2I Landscapes Exposition
M2I Landscapes Exposition

Wrecked bodies scavenging the lands in search for that forgotten knowledge. Hopeful they are longing for the eternal life among their brothers & sisters at the stars.

Art Techniques

Barren landscapes are depicted using traditional oil painting inter mangled with AI driven reference generation based upon my own (traditional) works.

A new traditional work is created upon an AI generated reference on heavy gessoed paper or canvas using oil paints. The new work can then be served again to the AI for a new reference generation. And thus an unendless feedback loop is created and continued …

M2I TRADQAN WIP
M2I TRADQAN WIP

I created the term (abbreviation) ‘TRADQAN’ to indicate this kind of work progress.

Future

I created several new works within this series and I am planning to continue to explore even more.

You can discover the art series at my Contemporary website. Various works are already available as NFT on OBJKT marketplace which runs on the CleanNFT blockchain Tezos .

M2I Landscape - TRADQAN
M2I Landscape - TRADQAN

March 2 Infinity - Transhumanists

Story

'Transhumanism' is a philosophical and intellectual movement which advocates the enhancement of the human condition by developing and making widely available sophisticated technologies that can greatly enhance longevity and cognition. (WIKI)

Technology (mis)used to modify one owns human body to reach the status of gods.

But does unchecked, wild & dangerous changes to one self modifies ones soul as well?
Nobody knows.

Results often madly gone wrong. Only a happy few that reach the goal of eternity.

M2I Transhumanism
M2I Transhumanism

Art Techniques

This new art series depicts portraits of modified humans using a raw painting technique of oils mixed with charcoal on heavy gessoed paper.

Transhumanist - Initial drawing
Transhumanist - Initial drawing
Transhumanist - Oils WIP
Transhumanist - Oils WIP

Future

I am planning on creating an extensive range of portraits. I might consider launching these series as a new NFT collection.

Retrospect

I am quite happy with my progress and new creative paths. I am definitely looking forward to a new year to continue exploring these art series.

Steven

Academy Open Doors

My local academy Sint-Niklaas (Belgium) is having its ‘open doors day’ this weekend. People can freely visit all the class rooms and get to know the various disciplines and look at the created art by the students.

Academy Open Door 1
Academy Open Door 1

My traditional AI based art works are on display as well. You can find them in the class room and in the hallway.

Academy Open Door 2
Academy Open Door 2

Feel free to drop by and explore the academy.

More info at the academy website (dutch).

Exposition PARADE

I am participating in the exposition ‘PARADE’ at the art academy in my home town Sint-Niklaas (Belgium).

Exposition PARADE
Exposition PARADE

I am displaying some of my new “tradqan” oil paintings from my ‘March 2 Infinity’ art series. The art series examines the impact of technology on humankind and the quest for Transhumanism. The works themselves are created using a process of feeding my own traditional oil paintings into an AI computer model which then generates new images. Those new images are then used as a source for creating a new traditional oil painting. And then the process restarts …

Students will also work in the exposition area during normal class hours so feel free to drop by and say hello.

More info regarding the exposition at the academy website (dutch).

Art Series - March 2 Infinity NFT & GAN

The March 2 Infinity art series has been extended with ‘GAN’ based digital artworks and made available as NFT on HEN.

March 2 Infinity - GAN - NFT
March 2 Infinity - GAN - NFT

This art series examines the impact of technology on humankind and the quest for Transhumanism.

I envision that in a not so far future the earth has undergone dramatic environmental changes. Within those strange landscapes, leftover human groups wander around in search of huge black obelisks which are told by their prophets to hold the long forgotten and forbidden knowledge of Transhumanism. With this knowledge humans can become gods and reach for the stars and leave the destroyed Earth. Just like their lucky ancestors once did.

The traditional landscape artworks are executed in oils and charcoal and use a fluid, expressive style.

M2I Traditional
M2I Traditional

The subject matter & impact of technology is ideal as a concept to experiment with ‘Generative Adversarial Network’ (GAN for short) machine learning. Basically a deep learning network of computers uses my artworks to train itself to generate new art combining my art and public available internet images.

M2I GAN Art
M2I GAN Art

The results are further digitally reworked and fitted into the theme of the art series.

The art works are now available as single edition NFT’s on the clean Tezos blockchain platform. You can collect them via my M2I Art account.

I hope you enjoy the new creative possibilities and will join me with the march 2 Infinity.

New Website Contemporary

I am very happy to announce the release of my brand new Sedas Contemporary website.

Sedas Contemporary
Sedas Contemporary

The site focuses on my contemporary art. By doing so I hope to offer a distinct experience for art enthusiasts & collectors that favour such kind of art & related themes.

The following art series are included upon launch:

  • Digital Waves
  • March 2 Infinity

More might follow in the near future.
Other specific sedas websites will be created as well.

Technically the site is completely rewritten to use the concept of Jamstack. This results in a server-less, super fast rendered site with content pages that adheres to the Google Core Web Vitals standard for website page ranking.

Launching my first Crypto Art Collection on OpenSea

I am excited to announce I am launching my first Crypto Art (NFT) collection on the OpenSea platform. The art series ‘March 2 Infinity - Visions’ - regarding humanities quest into transhumanism - is started with 10 minted works.

OpenSea Visions Collection
OpenSea Visions Collection

The art series ‘March 2 Infinity - Visions’ - regarding humanities quest into transhumanism - is based upon my traditional art series ‘The March To Infinity’ and contains digitized reworked traditional art works.  They will not be available in the real world. The collection is started with 10 minted works that will be listed over the coming weeks but more will be added later on. 

Feel free to send me any upfront offers if you like them and don’t want to wait for the actual listing.

I am quite excited about this new online possibility to find new art collectors and to embrace these new technologies of the digital era.  Cryptocurrencies will become one of the default means of (online) payment in the near future.

Now for those a bit less tech savvy I hear you thinking “Crypto Art” .. “NFT” … what is he talking about ?

Right.

Let’s try to explain this with a simple analogy.

You probably have heard about the term “Cryptocurrency” or “BitCoin” before.  This is basically virtual money - living on the internet - in what we call ‘a blockchain’.

A blockchain can best be imagined as an ever growing train with each compartment holding a number of transactions.  The compartments are sealed once full thus the transactions are no longer modifiable and the train just keeps on growing longer when new transactions are executed. 

People use a virtual wallet (a software application) to communicate with this blockchain.  It tells you which of those transactions are yours … basically what you own on that blockchain ( thus hold in your wallet ).

Crypto Art ( or NFT - non-fungible token ) is created as a transaction on that train and it holds an unique reference to a digital artwork.  Once put into that compartment that link (and other data about the artwork) cannot ever be changed again.  When you buy such a digital token then that act of ownership is yet another new transaction on that blockchain.  From that point on you are the solely global owner of that artwork.  And the proof of that is registered in that sealed off compartment on that train .. euh blockchain.  There is nobody else that can take ownership as the compartment is sealed off nor can they claim they own it as everyone can look up that transaction on the blockchain and verify who owns it. 

Obviously you can still sell that artwork and thus transfer the ownership if you want to somebody else. That again will be a transaction that can be verified and is persisted in the blockchain.

NFT items are unique items on the blockchain - the creator of that NFT guarantees there is only 1 unique copy.  Semi-NFT items exist as well - these can be created in limited supply amounts of eg 50 pieces.

OpenSea is one of the platforms that allow you to browse and trade such items. 

OpenSea Home Page
OpenSea Home Page

Artists can use it to manage their unique collections and sell or auction items.  NFT’s are considered to potentially be the future of ownership in the new digital era. New art collectors arise that simply want to digitally collect and own artworks. And potentially invest in digital artists and the fact their works become more famous.  It is becoming a digital alternative to the current art world of galleries and collectors.

So what do you need ?

In order to participate you will need:

  • to install a crypto wallet on your computer or smart phone - MetaMask is quite popular and is installed as an extension in your web browser.
  • obtain some cryptocurrencies by typically exchanging them against real money (called fiat currency).  Nowadays it can be as easy as using your VISA or Mastercard for that.

The above steps and even more are nicely explained in the following blog at OpenSea - How to get started.  

I sure hope I could make it a bit clearer what Crypto Art is all about.  If you do have additional questions then do not hesitate to contact me.

And hopefully I can soon count you in as a new digital art collector with a nice NFT Sedas in your collection.

Have a look at my collection and enjoy your new online art collection.