New currency queens; NFT collections inspired from South-Asian culture

A thought-provoking NFT collection attempts to carve out a space for women
Kinky Ranis
Kinky Ranis

When Grammy-nominated electronic dance music DJ, Steve Aoki, bought Vidya Vinnakota’s ‘Kinky Ranis’ piece in January from SuperRare NFT, it was a surreal moment for the San Francisco-based artist. “My goal for this series is to uplift women of colour in the NFT space and spread the representation. Who doesn't like to see some badass Ranis taking charge of their identities and sexuality?” says Vinnakota.

Crypto Ranis is an NFT collection stored on the Ethereum blockchain available on the SuperRare platform. Each piece is one of its kind and has a narrative to it. This series highlights fierce women highly inspired by South Asian culture and sensuality. These Ranis are known for bold expressions, devoured in bright, traditional patterns, creating the face of the modern desi woman.

Vinnakota minted the first Crypto Rani on September 20, 2021. What valued at 0.07 ETH (roughly $3,000) has now ballooned to more than hundreds and thousands for each female avatar. The collection comprises 16 unique 3D illustrations of women to “balance representation in the NFT space” .

Hailing from South Asian diaspora, 3D designer Vinnakota has been a part of the animation industry for the past five years. Through the series of artwork, she wants women to take control of their narrative and be comfortable to bring their stories into this world. She says, “I want more women to feel free and talk about their sexuality, their desires and identities.

I think it’s important to represent this take on the modern Indian woman so we can feel more connected and create this strong female community that talks about topics that were deemed to be uncomfortable.” According to a report published by ArtTactic, only 16 percent of NFTs in the market trace back to female artists. It sparked discussions and initiatives that inspired more female artists to emerge and bridge the gender gap in the market.

This Carnegie Mellon University graduate with BFA in Animation has her own take on design language. “Computers don’t make art, people do. The medium and software is just a tool to elevate our ideas, which is the most crucial part, besides vision,” she adds.

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The New Indian Express