Dave Krugman

Dave Krugman’s “ROLLS”: The Convergence of Film Photography and Blockchain

BY Keisha Oleaga

August 09, 2023

Dave Krugman, the esteemed New York-based photographer, crypto artist, and writer, is no stranger to pushing boundaries. Founder of the creative community ALLSHIPS, Dave believes in the age-old adage, “A rising tide raises all ships.” With his works like DRIVE, Drip Drop, and SPECTERS, he paints a picture of a world at the crossroads of art and technology.

His latest endeavor, “ROLLS,” is a testimony to his penchant for merging the contemporary with the classical. The project draws intriguing parallels between blockchain technology and film photography, a perspective Krugman once tweeted, viewing film photography as “a chemical blockchain.”

An Unconventional Canvas

At its core, ROLLS explores the similarities between film photography and blockchain. Krugman posits that both act as time chains and operate with proof of work mechanisms. In essence, both are record-making systems that rely on decentralized consensus mechanisms to verify relevance and truth.

Taking this concept further, Krugman sees each roll of film as a ‘block’ in a larger chain. “Photographers use a proof of work mechanic to ‘mine’ rolls,” he says, “and these rolls together form a decentralized time chain, an unchangeable record produced by a decentralized community of validators.”

Navigating ROLLS

The mechanics of ROLLS is as innovative as its concept. It starts with ten tokens being sequentially auctioned off on SuperRare, with each token symbolizing a frame on a roll of film.

Here’s the catch: Krugman sells these tokens before capturing the photographs. The artwork on the tokens is merely a placeholder.

Once sold, he will shoot the images with his Mamiya 7ii medium format film camera. The token’s metadata “develops” subsequently, updating with high-resolution film scans of the images captured.

This approach brings an element of trust into the equation. The collector is investing in an idea before its fruition. Krugman likens this process to a two-way challenge.

“This is a space of deep speculation- I wanted to give people the opportunity to buy an idea before I ever even execute it. It adds mystery, intrigue, and a two-way challenge. The collector is challenged to trust me and my ideas/process, and I’m challenged to create something worthy of that trust and investment.” Krugman stated.

“The collector is challenged to trust me and my ideas/process, and I’m challenged to deliver art worthy of that trust.”

Dave Krugman

Why Sequential Auctions and the Mamiya 7ii?

By auctioning tokens sequentially, Krugman believes he can focus on each frame individually and garner maximum bids. This tactic also piques longtail interest, drawing more attention and intrigue to the project.

“By focusing on one at a time, all bidders are concentrated on each frame as they sell. By extending the auctions over ten days, I also get the advantage of the longtail interest in the project.” Krugman shared with nft now.

His choice of the Mamiya 7ii for the ROLLS project is rooted in the camera’s quality and aesthetic. Each roll offering ten frames fits perfectly with the project’s structure. Additionally, the Mamiya 7ii holds sentimental value for Krugman, as it was procured with the profits from his DRIVE project.

The Horizon Ahead

With sales already surpassing expectations, the success of ROLLS for Krugman has been an affirmation of his innovative approach to art. While ROLLS offers myriad possibilities, Krugman clarifies he doesn’t like to set rigid expectations for his art. “It’s just art,” he states.

“What I’m most excited about is that ROLLS is just a scaffolding for so many other ideas. What if I sell a whole ROLL to one collector and then shoot something they ask for? What if I do a roll of portraits and split proceeds with subjects? What if I use a ROLL to raise money for a cause I care about? The possibilities are truly endless.”

“Supporting my work means supporting my ecosystem- an ecosystem that is driven by the desire to decouple artists from commercial interests. What’s “next” is that I will continue on this mission and do my best to add beauty to this world.” Krugman shared with nft now.

Dave Krugman’s ROLLS is more than just another project. It is a testimony to the myriad possibilities at the intersection of art and technology, pushing boundaries and challenging conventional narratives.

“What’s “next” is that I will continue on this mission and do my best to add beauty to this world.”

Dave Krugman

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