Postdigital Narrative Art 

Grandfather of NFTs 

Postdigtial Narrative Art

Narrative plays a prominent role in the postdigital art of Web3 and NFTs. In my book, The Future of Art in a Postdigital Age (Intellect Books/University of Chicago Press), the word “narrative” appears fifty times, from art narrative, autobiographic, biblical, community, creative, data-driven, historical, to personal narrative.

I have been exploring visual narrative art in many of my artworks that can be seen at my website Mel Alexenberg and at Wikipedia. I also created an Artiststory blog in 2007 with the 2011 post Postdigital Narrative Art.

I partnered with Michael Bielicky, professor of digital media art at ZKM University of Arts and Design in Karlsruhe, in establishing the Institute for Postdigital Narrative at ZKM in 2010. The video of my talk at the inauguration of the Institute can be seen at Vimeo.

The statement of the Institute’s aims are even more relevant today than they were over a decade ago. “Mankind has always operated on narrative to explain and understand its own existence. Our times, in particular, call for the exploration, expression and especially, creation of new story-telling formats." NFTs offer unprecedented opportunities for generating creative postdigital narratives.

Phygital Art Experience

Phygital” is a recently coined term to describe art experiences that create a dialogue between physical and digital art forms. The original physical artwork and related NFTs realize the current trend described in the New York Times article “NFT Collectors Getting Real.” It explained that new NFT collectors crave the context for their digital collections that art history can offer through physical artworks. 

For example, owning the Narrative NFT: Cyberangels, Rembrandt, King Charles III described here can be enriched by also owning Alexenberg’s 1986 ground-breaking experimental lithograph of cyberangels in flight Digital Tribute to Rembrandt that is in the collections of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History, Rembrandt House Museum, and Victoria and Albert Museum.