Renowned artist All Seeing Seneca, known for her prominent role in creating Bored Ape Yacht Club’s artwork, has revealed her groundbreaking digital art series, “Perils of Sēsē” with Transient Labs. Notorious for her inclination towards privacy, which extends to her in-person appearances (she conceals her identity behind a mask) and online presence (she keeps her inner thoughts guarded), this collection marks a departure from her usual discretion.
With a limited release of only 2,880 unique pieces, this collection represents an innovative fusion of generative and hand-drawn art, promising an immersive journey into Seneca’s mesmerizing and surreal creative realm.
In an exclusive interview with nft now, Seneca delved deeper into her artistic journey and the profound significance of “Perils of Sēsē.” She shares that the project is profoundly intimate, stemming from the depths of her inner self, and the act of sharing it with the world has proven to be an anxiety-inducing journey for her. Because her art is an extension of herself, she revealed that such vulnerability shared with the world can be difficult.
“If you know me, I’m literally in tears because I’m so nervous every time I’m releasing a new body of work,” she said. “I’m pretty private and have held my paintings close. But the determination to show the world what I can do beats out my anxiety. I want to show what I can do.”
“Perils of Sēsē” signifies a major artistic milestone for Seneca, drawing upon her extensive background in traditional illustration and animation. Within this series, viewers are invited into a non-linear, multi-chapter abstract narrative exploring themes of self-reflection. The series introduces a captivating cast of three new creatures and a youthful protagonist inspired by fresh lore.
Infused with the timeless charm of storybooks and the essence of analog animation techniques, “Perils of Sēsē” takes a distinctive approach to the dynamic world of generative art. Each artwork serves as a page within the broader narrative of “Perils.” Despite having three distinct chapters, the series grants viewers the freedom to curate their unique path through this expansive and mystical tale.
When asked what Sēsē means or represents, Seneca replied, “Sēsē means ‘oneself’ in Latin. That’s all I’ll say to that.”
Each generative artwork stands as a standalone masterpiece, adorned with three distinct “blooms” of borders that gradually reveal themselves over time. Notably, the longer a collector retains a piece, the more it evolves and flourishes, providing insight into the depth of Seneca’s artistic vision.
Seneca shared, “This marks an official invitation into the whimsical world of ‘Perils,’ a place where thunder-breathing creatures coexist with a strangely familiar white dog.” Her words emphasize the immersive and imaginative nature of “Perils of Sēsē.”
Seneca embarked on a creative journey to challenge herself by translating abstract concepts into tangible designs. Her exploration drew inspiration from Freud’s psychoanalytic theory, specifically delving into the realms of the Id, Super-Ego, and the Ego. Carefully considering the emotions associated with each concept, she introduced three distinct characters: Arachne Catikus, Shermicus, and Sophos.
Arachne Catikus embodies primal instincts, untethered desires, and violence. Seneca brought this character to life with unsettling whiskers that possess a fur-like quality but stand upright like tendrils. The presence of multiple limbs imbues Catikus with an alertness that suggests readiness for chaos.
Sophos, on the other hand, represents the moral compass and societal rules. Seneca’s design for Sophos draws inspiration from the wise gods of Chinese culture, reminiscent of her childhood experiences of bowing to Buddhist gods depicted in illustrations. Despite the noble origins, Sophos signifies that societal rules do not always lead to peace and can become oppressive. He looms as a potential threat, casting a tyrannical shadow. The final series leaves room for interpretation as it introduces different forms of Sophos.
Lastly, Shermicus serves as a reflection of humanity, representing the Sapian and the Ego. This character also represents a different timeline of Shermie, a recurring figure in Seneca’s body of work. For those familiar with her work, Shermicus holds a special significance, inviting viewers to delve deeper into the intricate narrative web Seneca has woven.
Utilizing the ERC-7160 Token Standard with Transient Labs
In collaboration with Transient Labs, “Perils of Sēsē” will be the inaugural collection released on Transient Labs’ innovative token standard, ERC-7160, also known as Multi-metadata NFTs. This standard empowers each NFT to hold multiple pieces of metadata simultaneously, granting collectors complete control over the displayed version. Every brushstroke and technical mechanism behind the series has been meticulously crafted to facilitate a personalized journey for each collector.
Seneca remarked, “When I first encountered Generative Art, I was captivated by the technology. When Transient Labs introduced me to their plans for 7160, I knew it was the perfect canvas for this story. The longer people inhabit this world, the more their art will evolve. Collectors can seamlessly switch between versions because the beginning, middle, and end of a story are not set in stone.”
“First and foremost, I want to communicate that a story like this one needs time to develop emotional connection and thought. The Blossoms feature makes use of blockchain to encourage this form of development between the creator, the story, and, ultimately, the story participants. Folks should have more than a moment to explore. The longer you hold it, the more the artwork becomes beautiful, intricate, and engaging. The flora grows, and holders will feel the piece is more complete.”She added.
“I wanted to also grant the story participant the ability to choose the phase in which they’ve connected more,” she added. “Perhaps it’s the aesthetic, or they were emotionally tied to one – who knows. I leave it up to them.”
Seneca said she first approached Transient Labs with Perils, and everything seemed to fall into place together.
“I’ll let TL speak on  because that is the result of their brilliance, but I’ll just say I’m blessed to have been creating the series with them. It was truly serendipitous timing. They understood the story, and have played such an essential role in crafting ways to extend the experience holders will have with the work.”
Being Part of the Narrative
Generative art enthusiasts, digital art aficionados, and fine art collectors alike are invited to immerse themselves in the captivating universe of “Perils of Sēsē” and explore the enchanting narrative woven by All Seeing Seneca.
When Seneca’s audience collects a page from the Perils Chapters, they acquire a fragment of the narrative. Each page has a unique timeline, so what they receive becomes exclusively theirs. Seneca hopes that her future custodians will be inspired to complete their personal timelines with pages from all three Chapters of their own Perils story.
“The series isn’t just about me. It’s designed to challenge the viewer to create their own stories based on their interpretations of the different timelines of different pages,” Seneca said. “The abstraction of the work should reflect how they view the creatures and environments. It’s incredible to see people already producing and writing their own poetry with Perils and making personal connections – and it will be interesting to see how they view it when all the pages are revealed.”