Manetas Drops NFT collection on Julian Assange

Manetas Drops NFT collection on Julian Assange

Popular Greek artist Miltos Manetas is blessing the art community by dropping the NFT collection at this year’s Venice Biennale art exhibition, based on the now imprisoned WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

The 111 NFTs in the Assange collection are accompanied by music composed by Howie B, Manetas’ long-term collaborator.

Starting June 23, the “This Cannot Be Erased” collection will be released in three phases of 37 tokens each, with each NFT symbolizing a unique oil-on-canvas painting of Assange created by Manetas.

Miltos Manetas is no stranger to the Venice Biennale, he founded the exhibition’s Internet Pavilion in 2009. The Pavilion, now in its eighth year, is dedicated to Julian Assange this year. 

Manetas and Lightbox Director Mara Sartore opened the doors to “AIIA – Assange is internet, Internet is Assange” in May, an exhibition showcasing 222 hand-painted portraits of Assange created by Manetas.

Owners of the limited-edition Assange NFTs will become Trustees of AIIA, with proceeds going to the Internet Pavilion DAO. 

This system will allow members to have a say in how the Pavilion allocates funds to art projects in the future, with a focus on supporting work related to “internet freedom.”

Manetas began painting Assange during Covid in 2020, with the purpose of creating a new picture for each day of Assange’s confinement. Manetas later donated his work for free to supporters of the #AssangePower movement. 

Manetas’ ‘This Cannot be Erased’ NFT collection will be minted on Materia, a multi-chain NFT platform established by art professionals and blockchain experts.

Priti Patel, the UK Home Secretary, recently approved Assange’s extradition to the United States, where he faces a possible 175-year jail sentence.

At the moment, the journalist is still imprisoned at Belmarsh after being held there for more than three years at the request of US prosecutors, a position widely condemned by human rights organizations.

Manetas is not only sympathetic to Assange’s cause; he has met the Wikileaks founder multiple times and considers him a close friend.

According to Manetas, his goal with the NFT collection is to bring attention to the case, as many big media channels have abandoned Assange in recent years.

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