This series brings together artists, musicians, technologists, engineers, and theorists to join forces in the interrogation and production of new blockchain technologies. Our focus is to understand how blockchains might be used to enable a critical, sustainable and empowered culture, that transcends the emerging hazards and limitations of pure market speculation of cryptoeconomics.
Intended as a temporary laboratory for the creation of a living laboratory, the first workshop in the series takes a pragmatic approach towards building technical and economic capacity in the arts.
As the DAOWO series unfolds each lab works across a spectrum of themes and domains of expertise, breaking down silos and assumptions about what these technologies might mean. The aim is to birth a new set of experimental initiatives which can reinvent the future of the arts as we know it.
In 2016 Ruth Catlow, Furtherfield and Ben Vickers, Serpentine Galleries, led the symposium, Blockchain’s Potential in the Arts, hosted by the Austrian Cultural Forum. This symposium sought to bring together individuals from across the arts nationally to highlight and discuss the potential future impact of blockchain and encourage early engagement. This gathering and the activities that followed then led to the initiation of this series, intended as a form of active engagement in these rapidly unfolding technical and socio-economic developments.
‘What seems to emerge is a potential for blockchain to devolve mechanisms and processes for funding artists, as well as allowing various players in the arts ecosystem – artists, collectors, viewers, curators, and others – to define how they want to interact, with the possibility that sharing and artwork almost merge, or at least become as two sides of the same coin.’ U. Kanad Chakrabarti
The programme is devised by Ruth Catlow and Ben Vickers in collaboration with the Goethe-Institut London, and the State Machines programme. Its title is inspired by a paper written by artist, hacker and writer Rob Myers called DAOWO – Decentralised Autonomous Organisation With Others.