Each token (or "atom") contains a unique 9:44 minute 20x20 pixel video fragment of the original artwork ’89 seconds at Alcázar’ (in collections of MoMA, Whitney and Leeum museums). Join our incredible growing community of over 300 current atom holders!
Collectors purchase individual pieces, receiving a unique token (“atom”) on the Ethereum Blockchain (ERC-721)
Each atom contains a full ten-minute 20x20 pixel video, that can be viewed at Snark.art and stored in a digital wallet
Collectors can loan out atoms, or request a loanfrom the community, for public and private screenings
Individual atoms can also be bought or sold by collectors — each is a piece of art in its own right
Brooklyn, New York
Eve Sussman is a Brooklyn-based artist and filmmaker. In the course of her career, her work has pushed the boundaries of cinematic experience, compelling viewers to actively participate in the invention of the story.
What am I actually buying?
Each piece of 89 seconds Atomized is a 20 x 20 pixel block (what we're calling an "atom") of Eve Sussman's last remaining artist's proof of the video art work 89 seconds at Alcázar that she created with Rufus Corporation in 2004. Each atom is 400 pixels of the entire visual frame with a 9:45 duration that is the total running time of the video with the complete soundtrack.
Because of the mechanics of blockchain (more details below), you will own a piece of digital art that is uniquely yours, whose provenance and singularity cannot be pirated or faked. That piece of art can be viewed individually or in collaboration with other owners on Snark.art's platform; the piece can be sold, auctioned, borrowed, or lent out for a specified period of time; and the piece can also be "locked away" in a digital vault. It is yours and yours alone.
In the language of tech-speak, you will own a non-fungible token built on the ERC721 standard. Let's break that down for you:
Fungibility is a term from economics, describing whether commodities are interchangeable. A dollar bill, for example, is a fungible unit of currency — any dollar bill in circulation is interchangeable with any other dollar bill. Non-fungible commodities, such as a plot of land or original work of art, are one-of-a-kind. Your atom of 89 seconds… is non-fungible.
A token is simply a unique asset that is stored on the blockchain. While Bitcoin and Ethereum are tokens, a token does not have to represent a unit of currency — in our case, one token is one atom of 89 seconds… Tokens on the blockchain cannot be counterfeit, and a record of their sales and transfer is kept in perpetuity.
Because the Bitcoin and Ethereum blockchains were originally conceived as new forms of monetary exchange, the introduction of non-fungible tokens (CryptoKitties being the most famous example) required new code that manages their creation and exchange.
That code is ERC721, allowing for the verification of non-fungible tokens without the need for a central authority. Think of the ERC721 as the contract that stipulates the terms and conditions that govern use of the artwork; that contract is always completely transparent and open-source.
How can I buy a piece or multiple pieces?
Collectors can purchase atoms of 89 seconds Atomized using credit card or cryptocurrency during the initial offering. It will be possible to place a reserve for a purchase before the official sale launches. Once the pieces have been distributed to collectors, it will be possible to purchase an unlimited number of atoms from individual collectors at a price that is agreed upon by both parties.
Do I need to own cryptocurrency or a digital wallet to buy or own a piece?
You do not need to own cryptocurrency to purchase an artwork. Purchases can be done with a credit card. If you do not have a digital crypto wallet to store your newly purchased artwork, we have a process in place to help new collectors create one and we will transfer your artwork there automatically at the end of the process.
What is MetaMask?
Think of MetaMask as the digital vault for everything on the Ethereum blockchain. After signing up for MetaMask, you will receive a public Ethereum address — a 64-character string that acts something like your virtual home address. We will send the artwork to that address, but only you will have access to it.
MetaMask is available as a browser plugin, requiring the use of Google Chrome, Firefox, or Brave browser. Detailed instructions on installation and setup are available from MetaMask.
What is gas?
If you plan to borrow atoms from other collectors, or transfer them to a new wallet, you will be required by the Ethereum network to pay what is known as "gas", a small fee that ensures your transaction is committed to the blockchain records. Keep in mind, however, that if you plan to borrow all of the available atoms for a showing of 89 seconds Atomized, the total cost of gas can run up to several hundred dollars, at current rates.
You can check the current price per transfer at Eth Gas Stationat the time of this writing, it’s about $0.015 for a transaction time of less than five minutes.
How long does it take for transaction to take place?
Transaction times for Ethereum-based purchases can vary, but typically they take no more than 15 seconds. (Keep in mind, there are occasions when the Ethereum network becomes congested and transaction times can last several hours.) If you purchase using a credit card, transactions typically require no more than 5-10 seconds.
Can I buy on a mobile device?
Yes, you can make a purchase on any mobile device. Purchases with a credit card can be done on any mobile browser, while purchases with crypto require a crypto wallet app such as Fortmatic Mobile Wallet.
How can I view my piece?
Snark.art will provide a platform where your atoms can be screened within the context of the full 89 seconds Atomized, however any pieces you do not own will not be visible. Any atoms that you borrow or purchase from other collectors, however, will allow you to view those pieces. This functionality is still in development, and we will provide updates as we determine the precise feature set.
We encourage the community to build video players and experiences to create the ideal viewing experience for each user — collectors are not confined to viewing their piece on Snark.art. When public screenings are arranged, collectors who have loaned their atoms will be notified of the location; keep in mind, this is a global collaboration.
How can I sell or transfer my piece to somebody else?
Each owner can set a predetermined sale price for their atom — if a purchaser pays the full price, ownership will automatically be transferred over and the piece will be moved to the new owner's wallet.
Upon launch, Snark.art will offer an official marketplace for collectors to sell or purchase atoms. And atoms can also be transferred from one digital wallet to another at any time.
Can I buy/sell a piece on other ERC-721 marketplaces?
Yes. As the owner of the piece, you have the right to sell it in the market of your choice. Both buyer and seller should be aware, however, that the original terms and conditions of sale will carry through to the new owner. While these sales are platform-agnostic, owners will need to use the Snark.art platform to view their atoms.
How does a collective screening work? Am I obliged to participate?
One of the goals of 89 seconds Atomized is to increase the visibility and accessibility of artwork that would otherwise be seen by a very limited audience. That's why collective screenings form a crucial part of the on-going life of each atom, and any collective screening requires the cooperation of a network of collectors.
While we don't expect everyone to participate, the ever-changing mosaic of atoms on loan should create a compelling, ever-shifting experience for the audience. Collectors will, by default, opt into automatically lending the piece upon request; however owners may discontinue the loan of their atom at any time.
How can I organize my own screening?
The Snark.art platform will offer the opportunity for collectors to request a loan of all atoms owned by the 89 seconds... community for screenings. If an individual or institution would like to screen 89 seconds Atomized, they can request a loan on our screening page. The process is simple and collectors can simply choose a date, describe the screening if it is public, and process the transaction through your crypto wallet. Screenings are limited to 1 day and are reserved for atom holders only. Currently the cost of booking a date is less than $1. Please contact us if you would like to book a screening for a show that runs for more than 1 day.
Will my piece appreciate in value over time?
A recent report from the United Nations' scientific panel on climate change has found that the cataclysmic effects caused by global warming could occur far sooner than expected, perhaps as soon as 2040. Which is to say, who knows what will happen over the course of time?
Although we do not make any price guarantees, it's worth noting that the fine art market has proved to be one of the fastest growing investment sectors over the last 20 years. It's also worth noting that nothing in this world is guaranteed….
What is the blockchain?
Let's start with the big one. Plug the question into Google and you'll get any number of attempts at an answer. Blockchain is like the net of a soccer goal, like DNA, like our “pattern of thought”, like Google Docs (this one's actually pretty good).
But it's not nearly as complicated as these extended metaphors would have you believe. Seriously.
The blockchain is a method for digital record-keeping that doesn't require a central authority to verify its data. That's it.
Obviously there's a lot more complexity when you get into the actual execution of making those digital records secure, but that's it. It's also a deceptively simple idea, because the potential applications for the blockchain are seemingly infinite.
Imagine your bank without any wire fees or ATM charges; a digital music file that can't be pirated from a musician; or Facebook without Mark Zuckerberg. Theoretically all of these things are possible (as well as some admittedly preposterous ideas) because of blockchain technology.
How does blockchain technology work?
The blockchain is built upon a suite of different technologies (asymmetric cryptography, peer-to-peer architecture, algorithmic processing) that fundamentally does one thing: allowing the network to establish proof of ownership of digital assets.
Blockchain is built on a series of "blocks" (surprise) that describe a history of all network transactions or transfers of ownership. As new transactions come in, they are added to the ledger, and a large group of distributed computer systems works to verify that the data are correct (also known as mining).
What is Bitcoin?
Blockchain technology was the creation of Satoshi Nakamoto, a developer (or group of developers) who published their now legendary white paper in 2008. The technology is believed to be a response to that year's world financial crisis — as such, its initial concern was to create an international currency outside the control of banks.
And so the blockchain's first use case, also invented by Satoshi, was Bitcoin — a scarce form of electronic money that can be sent from user to user without an intermediary's involvement.
What is the Ethereum blockchain?
As adoption of Satoshi's technology grew, engineers quickly found new applications for the blockchain outside of currency. But the specific infrastructure behind the Bitcoin blockchain wasn't equipped to put many of these ideas into action.
Enter Vitalik Buterin, who in 2013 published a white paper outlining the idea for a blockchain platform that could also execute a newly developed programming logic (he was 19-years-old at the time). Suddenly the blockchain could do more than record financial transactions; with the Ethereum blockchain it was now possible to run decentralized apps (or dApps).
Don't let the nomenclature there throw you off — a dApp is nothing more than an application like Uber or Facebook, but one that can be run without a centralized control.
89 seconds Atomized is distributed on the Ethereum blockchain.
What is a token?
Tokens are the easiest way to think of ownership on the blockchain. Whereas Bitcoin is intended as a currency, however, tokens have a wide breadth of applications — they can be used to pay for data transfer, as an incentive to participate in a network, or give someone the right to use a copyrighted photograph.
How can I buy cryptocurrency?
In the United States, the simplest way to buy cryptocurrency is through Coinbase, a simple-to-use US dollar to cryptocurrency exchange for Bitcoin, Ethereum, and several other cryptos.
What is a digital wallet?
So you've bought some Ethereum from Coinbase… now what? While it's possible to let your newly purchased cryptocurrency linger on the Coinbase exchange, if you want to ensure that your crypto is safe(r) from the hands of hackers, you'll need to move that Ethereum over to a digital wallet.
The most popular software-based digital wallet is MetaMask — you can learn how to install it on your desktop here.
How can blockchain technology help artists?
In the past, everything that was touched by digital technology very quickly lost its value, because it was endlessly duplicable and protected by often inadequate rights management tools. In other words, it's wonderfully democratic, but it's also a terrible way for an artist to try to make their living.
The blockchain, however, introduces digital scarcity and verifiability to our interconnected world, allowing artists to use the internet's seemingly infinite distribution channels while still protecting their work, their income, and their copyright. Moreover it's also possible to introduce features such as royalty payments to every sale of a piece of art on the blockchain, which means artists can benefit from recurring revenue from their most successful pieces, something that was previously unheard of as artists historically have been locked out the secondary market.
How could the blockchain be used with physical art?
To date, the blockchain's relationship with physical art has been largely driven by provenance — using the blockchain's etched-in-stone ledger to track the sale and purchase of art pieces. While the integration of physical and digital is often slow, we believe that there is a great deal of potential for blockchain to have an even more transformative effect on physical art pieces — we've just got to wait for a visionary artist to show us how.
What are the applications for blockchain and digital art?
Would you believe us if we told you they're pretty much endless? Blockchain is still in its infancy — think the internet of 1994 — which means the capabilities for the technology have yet to be fully understood or imagined. We’re hopeful that blockchain technology will allow digital art to flourish, gaining wider acceptance among collectors, critics, and a general audience.
What is Snark.art?
Snark.art is a Brooklyn-based technology studio that works with artists to produce original blockchain-based art and offer it to the public. We were founded in early 2018 by Andrey Alekhin and Misha Libman, long-time friends, entrepreneurs, and technologists who both have a background in the arts. You can read an interview with Andrey and Misha, and learn more about their vision for Snark.art, right here.
Our team also has extensive experience in the art world, having worked with organizations such as Christie’s, MoMA PS 1, Asia Society, Sotheby’s, Artnet, and more -- you can learn more about us here.
Why are you using the blockchain?
We believe the blockchain has the potential to transform the way art is made, sold, and experienced. While digital art has used the blockchain to manage provenance and ownership, and early ventures in art and blockchain, have been technologically impressive, we see an opening to use the technology as a medium, marrying blockchain with poetic content and aesthetics, to produce intellectually sophisticated projects.
Do you have a token?
We do not, at least not a generic Snark.art token. For 89 seconds Atomized, we have tokenized each video atom using the ERC721 standard. You can learn more about tokens, and ERC721, above.
Are you doing an ICO? (Initial Coin Offering)
Nope, at least not in the foreseeable future. While we think ICOs can be an effective means for businesses to finance their development, right now ICOs are mired in legal, regulatory, and financial vagaries. They also feel very 2017.
Our business model is more old fashioned — it's revenue-based. While artists garner the great bulk of all sales from their projects of Snark.art, we take a small commission.
What projects are you currently working on?
Do you accept submissions from artists?
Do you accept submissions from technology teams?
We’d like to help any technology teams that might be interested in gaining access to artists -- drop us a line at email@example.com to let us know what you have in mind.
What could be an ideal project for Snark.art?
First and foremost we care about meaning, message, and metaphor whether it is created visually, aurally, or using the written word. Works with strong poetic and conceptual content that we can develop with artists, to engage the blockchain in new and thought-provoking ways, are always interesting to us. We are especially drawn to projects that have an interactive component or develop over time –– an artwork with a “life” so to speak.