Financial News Hebdo: Can you tell us about your background and what led you to become a digital artist?
Ali Kanane: From a young age, I loved to draw, sometimes to reproduce things or phenomena that I like, and other times to simply escape. With such a spirit, it’s drawing or painting, it’s what helps me express myself. It’s a part that took an important chapter in my life, and suddenly I wanted to exist through this expression, which is “art”. I made the decision to learn it in an academic way, to be an interdisciplinary painter and make it my profession. In addition, I went to school “Jaber bin Hayan” and this is where i got my matriculation exam in plastic arts. I was so lucky to get into this technical high school, because then I took courses at a multimedia school to start at the Canadian School of Video Games at “Matane Cégep.
FNH: When did you hit your first NFT?
AK: My first NFT was a year ago. In fact, I was in the middle of a discussion with German friends about the concept of blockchain and NFTs … And this is where I posted my first non-fungible token with the title “Sir Phillip Anthony Hopkins”. It is a unique work, auctioned on the Ethereum (ETH) network, and which has subsequently rounded up the social networks. Since I am a fairly academic person, I also tried to reproduce 40 numbered prints on toilet paper, supplied with a certificate of authenticity. It was an inauguration for all my relatives so that they could integrate into this world from near or far. They have at least something physical in their hands and a QR code they can scan. This way, they will be able to integrate or just see what an NFT is.
FNH: Which platform did you choose and why?
AK: For the platform we chose “Rare” because it is quite a user-friendly page, easy to navigate, access and shop. For my second collection consists of 11,111 portraits of angelswe chose the Opensea marketplace.
FNH: NFTs are a speculative topic. Do you think they can be a sustainable solution for artists, galleries and museums?
AK: So yes … let’s say more or less. In fact, it is the community that attaches importance to these tokens by creating a particular one hype. We do not know how or when it will go up or down. It only takes one tweet to make investors shake. Now with Bear market and “Bull market”, people will be able to be more interested in captivating projects that provide added value and not just show-off objects, and why not act. I think in the future it will be more artistic. For me, it is a door that opens out to new horizons. A way that adds to what we used to see. A technology that provides solutions, especially and e.g. the smart contract or copyright, and ultimately visibility for everyone. However, I do not advocate a total digitalisation. On the contrary, I believe we can live admirably in both worlds and enjoy the benefits of each of them. You can exist in the digital as well as in the physical world and the gallery will never lose its value. But of course it can also exist in a virtual way.
FNH: In your opinion, is there an awareness of NFTs among Moroccans?
AK: Currently yes. At first, this phenomenon did not interest many people. It was just something to have, even though we did not know what it was exactly. Everyone was wondering, what is it? A new concept? A JPEG image that is worth so much. In the beginning, people were only focused on the economic aspect. But in my opinion, there is a territory and an enormous potential for expression behind this digital representation. For example, a talented young artist living in a small, remote village may attract the attention of a big star or a “Big fish”. And this only through blockchain, via one of the most famous platforms, and without having a network or going through a sleeve rub to have some option.