We are thrilled to debut our Art Blocks Engine – an on-chain tool for long-form generative art – with Stefano Contiero, a world renowned digital artist who works with code to create emotive artworks layered with personal meaning.
Titled Disconnected, Contiero’s newest collection is a poignant reflection on the human condition; feelings of isolation are explores through scattered shapes, whilst vibrant colours and a distinct sense of movement evoke notions of self-discovery and, ultimately, reconnection.
This marks the start of Unit’s new programme, providing a platform for artists and collectors to collaboratively bring code to life; when you mint, a unique work generates in real-time on the Ethereum blockchain. Although the artist’s algorithm determines the collection’s fundamental characteristics, a distinct output emerges with each new mint, uniting artist and collector through surprise and spontaneity.
The first mint from the Disconnected algorithm is featured below; click-through to Disconnected #0 to mint your own variation now.
Disconnected is a limited edition of 111 works at 0.2 ETH.
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Selected Test Outputs
Characteristic of Contiero’s approach to art-making, Disconnected is an attempt to examine universal human emotions and express their nuances through cutting-edge technology.
Through chaotic geometric structures, Contiero reflects on what it means to feel disconnected, not only from the world, but from one’s own sense of self. The palpable energy of Contiero’s brightly coloured compositions, however, evoke a sense of hope, echoing the artist’s optimistic perspective on life. Encompassing paradoxical feelings, Disconnected reminds us that feelings of isolation are not set, but can instead serve as springboards for personal growth.
The selection of test outputs presented above demonstrate the variety of forms and colours possible within the parameters of the programme. Whilst an unpredictable variation emerges with each new mint, the scattered geometries and grainy textures of Contiero’s collection remain consistent, inviting us to contemplate the connections, or lack thereof, that define our own lives.
Disconnected: A ekphrastic poem from the artist
The plane landed, and suddenly my world came down crashing.
Everything stopped. Time no longer made sense.
It felt calm, peaceful. No pressure, no questions.
I was tired, exhausted to emptiness. Yet again, feeling nothing.
There was nothing waiting for me behind those doors.
Just a big, empty, cold room. I lay down on the floor, motionless for hours.
What was even the point? Pushing myself to the limit, trying to fill the void filling my life.
Killing myself to fill (feel) those empty pixels, while burning down everything else.
Disconnected from everyone, disconnected from myself.
Disconnected from my heart, disconnected from my feelings.
Disconnected from reality, I abandoned myself.
I let go and I let in. And the sadness finally permeated that void.
2023 has been a journey to learn how to disconnect and reconnect.
In a journey of healing and patience, learning how to respect myself and my practice.
Like learning how to walk for the first time, I learned how to feel.
And those feelings finally filled that void.
Like technology, I needed a hard reboot.
To be forced to face the many things I escaped from all my life.
To fall in love again with my practice, this time in a healthy and conscious way.
To accept that it’s ok to be disconnected if you remain connected to what really matters.
Meet the Artist
is an Italian-Dominican self-taught artist who delves into themes of self-reflection and intimate expression. With a strong interest in technology and design from a young age, he pursued a career in tech before venturing into the world of generative art. Directing this professional expertise towards experimental generative techniques, he creates artworks that examine what he calls a continuous feedback loop between his subconscious mind and technology. With a particular focus on long-form generative art, Contiero embraces the power of emergence and the unpredictability of working with algorithms. Merging mathematical precision with unpredictable randomness, he systematically explores a range of motifs.
Contiero gained international recognition for his collections Frammenti (Art Blocks Curated, May 2021) and Rinascita (Art Blocks Playground, Aug 2021). Emblematic of his practice, these collections creatively combine geometry, colour and delicate linework. He has since released numerous collections on Art Blocks, as well as on other curated digital art platforms, including fx(hash), Bright Moments, and Tonic.