Porte Beckefeld has been one of the leading 3D artist/ motion designers in the Australian creative scene for the better part of the last five years. After successful tenures with some of Sydney’s most renowned studios, he began making waves with his hyper-stylised surrealist creations. One look at Porte Beckefeld’s works and it clear he has a deep adoration for the abstract. His piece depict luminescent forms orbiting eerie abysses, or in one case, a WRX, like stars in deep space.
With a renowned reputation within the digital art world, his transition to the world of NFT’s has been made even more fluid, becoming synonymous with the aforementioned three letters. Besides selling numerous works, he recently spoke with Foundation Labs founder Matt Vernon as a part of this year’s Semi-Permanent, solidifying his position as an Aussie NFT pioneer.
Hi David, thanks for taking the time to chat! Firstly, How have you been going with Lockdown?
Thanks,always have time for LWA, as my first press back in 2017 was here for my first show at Goodspace. It’s been fine, I’m busier than I’ve ever been. I’m also very much a tech art nerd hobbyist in too many areas. There aren’t enough hours in the day for me to read about the things I love: art, cars, film, gaming, crypto etc so I’m always occupied. Just missing ramen and all the social fruits of a pandemic free life.
I graduated with a Bachelor of Applied Design Mjr in Digital Media in 2014, part of our course was 3D in maya where I learned some basics but Mental Ray CPU rendering was laborious and frustrating. It wasn’t until 2016 with the advent of Octane Render I picked up C4D and really enjoyed the responsiveness of GPU based rendering, taking my hyper colour soaked 2D works from Illustrator at that time and bringing them into 3D, adding motion to pieces afterward where I saw fit.
I first heard about NFTs through my friend Matt Vernon (@dApp_boi), co-founder and lead designer of Foundation.app. I was already very familiar with crypto but what the true magnitude of an NFT could meant to an artist took me a while to grasp. Once it clicked it changed how I viewed digital media indefinitely. Never before has a digital artist’s work been able to have true scarcity in the same way a painter has a 1 of 1 canvas original. They say a week in the NFT space is a month and those early convos last year definitely feel much longer.
Matt asked me to participate in the V1 launch for Foundation in Oct/Nov 2020, back then I think there were around 25 artists on the platform (20k+ now). He explained the process of minting and listing an artwork hosted on the IPFS as an ERC721 token on the ethereum blockchain running under their platform.
Since then I have helped onboard 70+ creators on board to Foundation. 27 of these have totalled 250 Eth+ in sales which speaks volumes for the collectors of these artists. I still remember explaining how to get started with my friend ‘Lirona’ Ashkenazi (@iamlirona) before she minted her genesis piece on FND and to see how far she alone has come in the space with her Boi collection is mind blowing.
How did you link up with Foundation?
Around 2017 Matt reached out to commission me to create a 3D Illustration for his brand Neue Goods. We always were on the same page with our creative thinking (Shout out to Matt for showing me Pano Trial lol) and became good friends as a result. In 2020 he shared earlier prototypes of Foundation.app V1 and explained the tokenomics of NFTs to me. I could never have imagined how that conversation could’ve shaped where we’re both at now.
NFT’s are at large a community economy, a group of people who agree that someone’s work is worth a certain amount and maintain that value. This couldn’t happen without an incredible community of creatives and collectors supporting one another. I’ve seen artist’s lives changed indefinitely and made friends I can safely say are for life.
One of my favourite moments was when I first discovered Kitasavi’s work on insta, I dm’d him right away after seeing his piece ‘BUILDERS’. I gave him one of my Foundation invites and sent him some Eth to mint what would be his Genesis. From the moment he transferred it to my wallet it has been my phone wallpaper and later in the year he was kind enough to send me a large giclee print. Easily my most favourite piece I own.
Since then seeing his collections sell out on multiple platforms has been equally as rewarding for me knowing NFTs are been a vessel on his path as a working artist.
I’m biased to colourful expressions in the 3D art space. Artists that do this well are: @kitasavi, @yonkonline, @bumpyjunkie, @bray_kevin, @diegodiapolo, @newcolossal, @studio_brasch and of course @jessicaticchio.
Also very worth checking out dissrup.com a new NFT drop based platform focusing on metaverse utility by @yambostudio.
I would explain with a physical world example. Many are familiar with Andy Warhol’s Polaroid art collection. These are iconic pop art images that you can buy as a postcard or keyring for less than $20.That’s the physical equivalent of downloading an image of an artist you love online.
But if I were to purchase one of the original Polaroids from the Warhol collection for $100k+ I’d be doing it because I’d want the authentic, genuine provenance of that artwork. At this level of purchasing I’m not buying it for just the image, I’m investing much more deeper than face value and that is what buying an NFT is akin to.
Owning a genuine, authentic edition of a Digital Artist’s work.
Outside of my own digital art practices, I’ve been quite busy creatively directing on a few NFT art projects with close friends. I’ve learnt so much at a more technical level about the underlying utility of a token, how contracts work and what differs each use case. Creating inherent value through utility across these projects, is something that excites me for future applications across both art and design and entertainment.
I’ve also been working closely with the incredibly talented Katie Tholo (Revelo.com.au), previously in partnerships at Art Gallery of New South Wales. Collaborating with Studio Messa we’re crafting a stellar physical, contemporary NFT art experience with an incredible lineup of international digital artists. The exhibition is called ‘Satellite’ and will debut in Sydney in 2022.