A collection of NFTs has been inspired by the mantra that “everything is a remix” — and delivers a radical new interpretation of CryptoPunks.
Bastard GAN Punks says it stands against the traditional esthetic values of the art world by embracing ugliness and weirdness.
Every NFT in this collection is genderless. This was achieved by taking all of the CryptoPunks’ attributes — including their hair and glasses — and using artificial intelligence to create brand-new collectibles.
Overall, Bastard GAN Punks tackles a fascinating issue: With machines getting smarter and smarter, it’s becoming harder for humans to determine what is manmade.
The project aims to provoke people by making them ask searing questions of themselves: What is art? Are the tools the artist uses to create the real artists? And can a machine creation be as valuable as something that is manmade?
The team behind Bastard GAN Punks says the vast array of creativity tools out there, coupled with machine learning algorithms, are blurring the boundaries on agreed norms.
The concept is designed to be welcoming to those who are purchasing a nonfungible token for the first time — all while celebrating how this project has been derived from CryptoPunks, which has become one of the most successful NFT projects in monetary terms.
An exciting fusion
Bastard GAN Punks blends manmade art with AI — and also has a number of other points of difference. Alongside a decreasing pricing mechanism, all of the ETH gained through the minting process has been donated to charities through a smart contract. Minters were able to select which good cause should receive their contribution. Overall, 234.5 ETH was raised.
An active community has also formed around the project, complete with regular events and contests. Crucially, support is also given to the crypto initiatives that have been inspired by its approach — and this means that a so-called “bastardverse” is now growing.
Crucially, all copyright is given to those who own these NFTs. This means that creatives are encouraged to make their own derivative works.
The project’s founder says there are ongoing conversations with a number of metaverse worlds — all with a hope of ensuring these NFTs can communicate with different projects made on Ethereum.
How it works
Bastard GAN Punks has been characterized as a “badass” collectible project that’s ideal for those who were late to the CryptoPunks wave.
In a rather cheeky reference to the project it was inspired by, this collection positions itself as an cooler, fresher alternative to “boomer” CryptoPunks too.
A total of 11,305 Bastard GAN Punks have been minted in V2 — and of these, 847 are animated GIFs.
In an interesting twist, all of them come with a token description that’s akin to a fortune cookie. Each “thought” assigned to an NFT has been written by a machine learning algorithm that has been trained with the lyrics to punk and emo songs. A song contest has been launched that encourages participants to sing songs using these texts — and an underground crypto label is set to host diverse and experimental music.
Berk, the project’s founder, was inspired to start the project as a hobby. They wanted to practice the use of generative adversarial networks with their own dataset as part of their Masters degree — and wanted to make “interesting enough” remixes of CryptoPunks because they were unaffordable.
“Bastard GAN Punks carry the genes of original CryptoPunk, but they carry many different traits from several punks, so they don't know who their actual parents are,” the official website explains.
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