We finally did it. We hit peak weird NFTs and we have Madonna to thank for it.
We have already seen a myriad of extremely bizarre NFTs like toilet paper NFTs from Charmin, digital rock NFTs, and even “fart in a jar” NFTs sold by a famous TikTok user. Madonna’s new collection of 3 1/1 NFT videos, MOTHER OF CREATION, is somehow even more strange.
The 63-year-old pop star shocked everyone with an NFT triptych that is absolutely dripping with vague symbolism. The project was a collaboration with world-renowned and incredibly successful NFT artist, Beeple.
Beeple created the most expensive NFT ever sold, Everydays: The First 5000 Days, which went for an astounding $69.3 million. He is already known for making extremely strange and abstract NFTs and MOTHER OF CREATION is no different.
What is MOTHER OF CREATION?
The three NFTs titled MOTHER OF NATURE, MOTHER OF EVOLUTION, and MOTHER OF TECHNOLOGY all feature an entirely naked 3D model of Madonna. Be warned, all 3 of the minute-long videos show graphic nudity. The tryptic is supposed to symbolize the similarities between the creation of art and life. Madonna explained that she wanted to “investigate the concept of creation, not only the way a child enters the world through a woman’s vagina but also the way an artist gives birth to creativity.”
In each one, the model is giving birth to a different thing. In MOTHER OF NATURE, a tree grows out of Madonna’s vagina in a cold and lifeless laboratory setting. She narrates the video, pointing out that the tree growing against gravity and harsh weather is a metaphor for her journey as a woman.
In MOTHER OF EVOLUTION, the Madonna model is giving birth to hundreds of butterflies in a post-apocalyptic hellscape. The juxtaposition of beautiful butterflies in the ruins of a city symbolizes the paradox that there is evidence of life even while the world is burning. She ties this to motherhood, saying that mothers still give birth despite the oppression, pain, and suffering that is all too common around the world.
MOTHER OF TECHNOLOGY is easily the strangest of the three NFTs and features Madonna birthing a bunch of bloodied robot centipedes in a scenic forest. The centipedes represent technology: both its positive “life-giving” force and its dangers. The narration features poetry from the 13th-century Persian poet Rumi. This video is also the most off-putting and to make it worse it sports a confusing description that says “Technology continues to evolve in the physical, natural and real-world; we can do whatever we want, but there are consequences to that. Nature will ultimately win in the end.”
What does this have to do with a 3D model of Madonna birthing a bunch of robot centipedes?
We can only guess.
NFT projects led or promoted by celebrities are often little more than cash grabs. Certain celebs like Floyd Mayweather, DJ Khaled, and Logan Paul are well known in the NFT space for promoting scams. MOTHER OF CREATION isn’t that.
However, it could be a simple publicity stunt, which is not all that unusual for Madonna. She is well known for pushing boundaries to shock and amaze the public. This NFT tryptic certainly was shocking.
At least the proceeds will be put to good use. All the money will be split between 3 of Madonna’s favorite charities: The Voices of Children Foundation; a charity that supports children in their families affected by the war in Ukraine, The City of Joy; a transformational leadership community for women survivors of violence in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Black Mama Bail Out; a fund that provides bail money to black mothers and caregivers who are disproportionately incarcerated.
The three NFTs were auctioned off for a total of 309.1 ETH ($650k). Many of the biggest influencers in NFTs and crypto threw their hats in the ring trying to get one of the 3 pieces. Taylor Gerring, one of the main founders of Ethereum, and the NFT Twitter extraordinaire Cozomo de’ Medici bid on MOTHER OF EVOLUTION but they were outmatched. The final bid nearly doubled their efforts, taking home the piece for 72.05 ETH (~$150k).
Moonpay, the exponentially growing startup facilitating cryptocurrency purchases with credit cards, was able to buy MOTHER OF TECHNOLOGY for 66.5 ETH (~$138k). It has recently purchased multiple Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs for celebrities (including Jimmy Fallon and Post Malone) so maybe it bought this piece for another celeb. MOTHER OF NATURE was purchased for more than the other two pieces combined with a whopping 170.5 ETH (~$350k).
309.1 ETH will do a lot of good in the hands of the charities, but it’s a tiny bit low for 3 1/1 Beeple pieces. The recent market crash may have scared Beeple fans and fine art NFT collectors away from bidding too high. The relatively low sale prices may also be due to the NFT community’s split opinion on the project.
The conversation (more like a debate) on Twitter is still raging between its fans and detractors. Some people praised it as brave, and others just found it gross or distasteful. The New York Post even called it a “filthy attention grab” in a recent Tweet.
A Nice Break From Market Devastation
The MOTHER OF CREATION NFTs certainly grabbed people’s attention, even if they did not incorporate the most beautiful or meaningful videos. It was at least a break from the current bear market in NFTs and crypto. This present downturn has been fueled by general turmoil in all financial markets, combined with the collapse of the stablecoin UST. On top of that, the blue-chip NFT collection, Azuki, happened to run into a massive scandal on the same day.
Watch out for the next NFTimes edition where we dive deep into what caused this correction and what it means for the NFT market moving forward. It’s coming very soon.
Do you want to learn more about NFTs and keep up with the rapidly evolving market? Check out some of our favorite editions of The NFTimes:
- Read about the disaster that was the Otherside sale by the founders of Bored Ape Yacht Club in NFTimes Volume 20 – The Otherside Opens a New Chapter For NFTs
- Learn how influencers use the NFT market’s naïveté to their advantage and how you can use it to trade in NFTimes Volume 21 – The NFT Community is Naive
- Figure out how to recognize trends in the NFT market and how to recognize the next Azuki in NFTimes – The NFT Hype Wave Is Washing Over Asia
Keep up with Henry and NFTs 24/7. Join him in AlphaMint’s dedicated NFT Discord server.