BeinCrypto had the opportunity to meet the Oxia Palus group of artists during the Focus Art Fair event, which took place at the Carrousel du Louvre in Paris from 1st to 4th September. The first NFT collection of this group consisted of rescuing unknown paintings by famous painters.
We all know that throughout history artists have repainted their works, either for lack of money and canvas or simply because they thought their paintings weren’t good enough. Thanks to the X-ray scanner, Oxia Palus was able to restore these paintings and transform them into NFT.
BeInCrypto (BiC): Can you introduce yourself and the project?
Oxia Palus (OP): Oxia Palus is made up of neuroscientist Anthony Bourached and physicist George Cann, both graduate students of University College London, as well as mathematician and artist Jesper Eriksson.
BiC: Where do you think this passion for unseen and “long lost” images comes from?
BIT: From a reductive point of view, science is the most fundamental repository of information that documents the fundamental and immutable rules that govern the world. It is possible to assume that physics is at the bottom of the complexity hierarchy within science, as we can solve many physical systems analytically and accurately.
This hierarchy then goes up to chemistry, which studies molecules and their interactions, through biology, where molecules are assembled in organic matter. We then continue with neuroscience, the study of electrochemical interactions, then psychology, where the study becomes qualitative due to the complexity between the electrochemical components, which form complex actions. And finally, we come to sociology, where units capable of complex individual actions form complex social systems.
However, the top of this hierarchy becomes so difficult to formally determine that we have to rely on evolution-driven means to store information, such as emotions and culture. We believe that the primary storage of this information is art, due to its intrinsic relationship with culture and emotions, and is therefore the ultimate goal of complex modeling.
To paraphrase Turing: we need complex models to scientifically understand complex systems. Furthermore, it is a beautiful component of the human condition that we have come to appreciate in posterity. From a Darwinian perspective, then, we could argue that the continued preservation of precious works of art across generations has acted as a long line of collective selection, for the more valuable preservation of complex information.
In essence, the course of time has acted as a filter that selects only those pieces of art that are richer in historical information and that offer an insight into the culture. In our opinion, the importance of studying and contributing to the history of art therefore translates into the study and contribution to the more complex model of reality.
BiC: After the big NFT hype, the trend now seems to be fading and trading is down. Do you think this is only a temporary phenomenon and the market will go up? What are your hopes for this market?
BIT: NFTs are a very important innovation for the arts community because they have instilled a notion of ownership in the digital realm and the potential of NFT technology is still in its infancy.
However, we don’t think it’s worth speculating on prices and market movements, as these factors are largely unpredictable and have little to do with the underlying value of the technology. What interests us most is the growing popularity of technological development in the field and the fact that this development will have significant benefits for the democratization of the art and arts market globally.
Additionally, the boom and bust cycles we are currently experiencing seem to do more harm than good in the long run and we hope this area will experience more stability and predictability in the future as artists who want to make a living from their art should not be forced to live. in a hysterical market.
BiC: Why is it so important for you to offer your art in NFT format?
BIT: In the creative tech industry, there appear to be two main movements driving innovation, namely artificial intelligence and cryptography. Oxia is primarily a company focused on artificial intelligence and our research focuses on developments in this area.
However, we are thrilled to partner with the cryptocurrency community and take part in its rapid evolution, as the two spheres will inevitably and inextricably link to define the future direction of the arts.
So our first initiative was to launch a new project called “TextMasters”. Throughout history, many important works of art have been completely lost, stolen or destroyed without any visual representation. In some cases, however, the textual documentation of the works still exists. So we paved the way for the first AI resurrection of these works, leveraging text-to-image conversion models like OpenAI’s DALL-E 2.
Through these, we can use textual input in combination with the classical formation of the artist’s catalog to give life to an otherwise lost work of art. The result of this process was a new series of NFTs published on the KnownOrigin platform. So far, the series has led to the resurrection of works by Leonardo da Vinci, Titian, Velázquez and Giotto … Likewise, we are delighted to have seen our first sale within this series; “Medusa” by Leonardo da Vinci, during our exhibition in Paris.
BiC: Are you planning to exhibit within the metaverse in the future?
BIT: We are intrigued by the idea of hosting exhibitions in the metaverse, as we would like our work of restoring ancient masterpieces to be accessible to everyone on the planet, not just those who can afford it, and freedom of movement to come to the Louvre. The whole history of art should be accessible to everyone and if we could lower the accessibility bar to that of an Internet connection, we would be happy.
However, we remain rather cautious about placing too much emphasis on the idea of a “metaverse” at this time. The initial idea was described as a decentralized and open source phenomenon on a global scale, while today the major tech companies are dedicating huge funds and resources to the development of their virtual worlds. This is a good thing for accelerating the development of exciting and useful technologies, but it is far from the idea of a true metaverse, since these companies will inevitably be the gatekeepers. So calling current initiatives differently from a privatized virtual world is unfortunately a real misnomer.
That said, what we can perhaps hope for is that the massive resources earmarked for these companies’ projects will be used to develop useful technologies that, when aggregated, will help form an emerging metaverse in the truest sense of the word. It is with this in mind that we are excited to look into the possibilities for virtual display, as long as they allow for greater accessibility.
BiC: What are your next projects or news that we should be aware of?
BIT: Our biggest project is the recently launched TextMaster NFT project. Otherwise, we are fully dedicated to perfecting our in-house technology and pipeline to bring our product as close to perfection as possible.
Additionally, we are donating one of our resurrected Modigliani works to the AI Center at University College London, where we hope to inspire future students to pursue their ideas and passions.
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