Weekly Recap

79 Au | 5.18-24 At Home with the Supernatural

Art lovers have often revered their favorite works as a portal into the artist’s soul. Artists transform a subject in the act of recreating it. But the viewer also changes as they absorb the artist’s vision. Yet another theme racing through the artworks in “Portal Realms” is the supernatural forces of change.

Anything can be a portal: a memory, a daydream, a movie, a threshold. It can be physical or intangible, real or imaginary. Almost more important than the portal itself is the version of ourselves that meets us on the other side.

Joyce Korotkin Looks Into the Light

Many of Joyce Korotkin’s artworks take root in the in-between places that populate our world. Some of her works live in a moment between the past and the future, a disquieted present. Others look at the world almost through a supernatural lens. “I’ve been fascinated by the lore of crystal balls since I first saw The Wizard of Oz as a young child,” Korotkin told 79 Au. “[Specifically] the scene where Dorothy gazed into the Witch’s ball at a world within the world.” 

Many of Korotkin’s earliest memories involve her getting lost in a world of color. As a young girl, she drew a line with chalk along the bricks of her childhood home. “I stared at it as closely as my eyes could get, transfixed, for what seemed like hours,” she added. Then in Kindergarten, she dipped a brush into a pot of deep pink paint. “I couldn’t get enough of staring at it; I wanted to devour it,” she added.

Ever since, she has been fascinated by the power of the gaze. Or rather, how one can be transported into an alternate universe by the act of gazing. 

In her work “The Occurrence: The Child #1,” she shows a child looking over a scene of destruction. Here, she taps into another recurring theme of her work, “that out of the blue of an otherwise perfectly ordinary day, something happens that transforms the world forever.”

"Occurrence: Species 1 / Transmutation 1"

“Digital art and the emergence of NFTs felt like the same quantum leap from the past into something completely new and disconnected. Here was an intangible art comprised of nothing but light.”

Even the evolution of Korotkin’s project shows the ways in which technology can change the world in an instant. The child featured in the artwork in the “Portal Realms” exhibition is the protagonist of  “The Occurrence” series on Mint Gold Dust. The artwork was created using AI, procreate and animation. However, Korotkin created the other works in the series before she ever heard of AI art tools. “Suddenly, it’s here, and everything has changed.”

The overnight success of AI feels similar to the recent NFT bull market, though on a smaller scale. Each technology helped us recognize the hurrying pace of the future. “Digital art and the emergence of NFTs felt like the same quantum leap from the past into something completely new and disconnected,” Korotkin said. “Here was an intangible art comprised of nothing but light.” 

“Light has always been the province of painters,” she pointed out. It is one of the main things everyone writes about when discussing a specific work. “Vermeer’s Light, Rembrandt’s light, Caravaggio’s light, Impressionist light. And here was a new art, distilled to art’s essence: Light itself.”

Matt Menendez Explores Interstitial Space

Menendez’s piece “Beyond the Threshold: The Portal” features a figure edging closer to a gateway. The terrain flashes with seas of blue and white light. This work, like many others by Menendez, leans into themes of fantasy and science fiction. The ambiguity around the setting as well as the subject allow for the viewer to fill in the details. 

“What excites me the most is that [fantasy and sci-fi] allow for unlimited possibilities of imagination and invention,” Menendez told 79 Au. “It’s their sense of wonder and escapism that always draws me in.”

Indeed, the portal taps into both the escapist nature of fiction and the shift from one reality to the next. Like in life, the future that will greet the subject in the artwork is still unknown. And it is that very quality of uncertainty that makes gazing into the flashing blue so exciting. 

Menendez has a long career in architecture and design, which one can see readily in his work in “Portal Realms.” With an acute awareness of space, Menendez aimed to explore the idea of the in between. “Interstitial space is a common conversation in the architectural world,” he said. “But in the context of the metaverse it holds a different meaning.” 

When we think of portals in metaverse spaces, we typically think of doorways to different worlds or spaces within a world. “You don’t really get to experience them,” he said. “They are more  just a ‘quick’ teleportation to a different space.” It was this area of intrigue that inspired “Beyond the Threshold: The Portal.” What might the inner workings of a portal in virtual space look like if we took the time to look?

“Interstitial space is a common conversation in the architectural world. But in the context of the metaverse it holds a different meaning.” 

"States of The Metaverse - Flow"

“I wanted to explore this interstitial space as an atmospheric experience that spans x amount of time rather than a quick transition,” he said. “The notion that one can experience the space from one side of the portal to the other is fascinating to me, and I would hope for others too,” he added.

A Virtual Butterfly Effect

Both artists we spoke to this week were fascinated by the unlimited possibilities that exist in making even a single piece of art. When using AI art tools, word choice alters the output. When choosing colors, even a slight shift of shade could change the mood.

“What I use as a prompt for portals in Midjourney isn’t the same as, say, Kaiber, which is what I used to create ‘Beyond the Threshold,’” Menendez said. “I like to think of these different prompt syntaxes of language and how we look at different architectural styles.”

And for Korotkin, her love of color spills over into a perfectionist’s dilemma. “Just about every digital piece I make has several iterations, mostly based on different colors,” she said. “And sometimes I just mint them all and let collectors decide for themselves. ‘The Secret Life of Flowers’ is one such series.”

No matter the medium or style, each choice the artist makes affects the next. And it is in these strange and unsettling moments between start and finish where art truly thrives.

Ready to get started as an artist or collector on Mint Gold Dust? Check out our Metamask start up guide to get started. Ready to start minting? Apply to talk with our curatorial team today.

Weekly Recap

79 Au | 5.11-5.17 The Power of Community and Art

There are many reasons to feel like the world is different coming out of the COVID 19 pandemic. We understand the virility of trends in a new context. Globalization has taken on new meaning. But the one thing that hasn’t changed is how important connection and community are to us. Even when we were apart, art brings us together. In a time of social distance, it helped us bridge the physical gap between us.

One aspect of the NFT art revolution that is both a blessing and a curse is its global nature. On one hand, it brings people together who may not have ever met. On the other hand, it means that we experience our community through the lens of a screen. Pulling back the curtain (or the screensaver), we might find that connecting is the most tangible thing in the world, no matter the medium.

The artworks included in the Mint Gold Dust exhibition “Portal Realms” explore the theme of transformation in many ways. Today we can think about the power of community and how it transforms us into the best version of ourselves.

“A Creator’s Soul” by Lianna Adams

Lianna Adams on Community, Education, and Inclusion

The work of Lianna Adams is full of vibrant colors and natural imagery. Instead of shading and blending, she uses detailed imagery to create depth in each piece. Having spent the early days of her career in broadcasting, she has a unique ability to tell stories and to blend mediums.

“I spent my childhood and youth learning embroidery from my grandmother,” she told 79 Au. “That played a huge part in developing my love of art movements like art nouveau, aestheticism. Also my interest in symbolism and the arts and crafts movement.” Like embroidery, her work revels in the beauty of the natural world placed atop a simple surface. Using her unique aesthetic, Adams has worked with digital mediums and physical ones. She has paired her art with design to create unique items like bags, clothing, and pottery. 

But one of the things that makes Adams a powerful force in the Web3 ecosystem is her ability to bring people together through art and to use art to spark conversations. “I am always looking for ways to step in and speak up for what is right,” she said. Then she added, “I use art as a way to create dialogue and to cultivate a humanity-first culture within different communities to hopefully build bridges that fosters understanding and compassion.”

“I use art as a way to create dialogue and to cultivate a humanity-first culture within different communities to hopefully build bridges that fosters understanding and compassion.”

Considering the technical nature of Web3, one of the biggest challenges to artists–to anyone–trying to get into the space is a lack of understanding of how it all works. Adams has made a concerted effort to lead people into Web3 and to create a space where people can feel comfortable to ask questions. In the same vein, she has created space for people to voice their struggles with mental health.

Chazz Gold on Connecting Time and Space

Chazz Gold joined me on a video call from a spaceship circling an orange planet. He had just finished working on a new piece of art. It was sort of a request for a piece with a new color palette from one of his collectors. He was so inspired by the idea that he woke up early to make it before hopping on our 8AM call.

“I went to bed and then I had a dream about, like, blending and making darker ones,” he told 79 Au. “I woke up and I went straight to the computer before I even had coffee.”

Chazz approaches everything this way: with unbridled excitement. Since launching his career as an NFT artist in 2021, he has sold over 1,000 pieces. If you look at his Twitter timeline, he is talking about art and AI all day long.

Many of his artworks are modern takes on portraiture, which makes sense because he began his career in photography. In one folder that he showed me, he had over 60,000 photographs. “So I can take those and put those through AI and then build on top of them,” he said. “It’s a lot of work, and it doesn’t always come out right. And in the early days using stable diffusion to get something dream-like, it was hard.” He began training his own models, running and re-running them. It took hours, even days or months, to get one good image.

But as AI art tools have evolved, so too has Chazz’s style. Inspired by the duality of cyborgs as both machine and human, he explored the cybernetic. In recent years, he has gotten into the aesthetics of psychedelia. Throughout, his basic technique has remained the same. Beginning with live subjects, he has a photo shoot, and then transforms the human into something metahuman.

How Connections Change Lives

The life of an artist is difficult, especially when you add the stress of minting NFTs. The pressure of being an artist in such a fast-paced environment is apparent. However, until recently, most artists have not felt comfortable talking about burnout, anxiety, or any of the other challenges that they face trying to make it in this space. “When I started the Weekly Mental Health Check-Ins [on Clubhouse] in 2021, there weren’t that many rooms for people to just share how they are doing, really,” she said. A pioneer in helping NFT artists take care of their mental health, she continues to host weekly check-ins and to help others find their strength in community.

“If it wasn’t for the NFT community, I would not have been sober in the pandemic. Honestly, I wouldn’t have, I wouldn’t have made it. Because nobody would’ve known that I went out and used again.”

Right: “The Dark Starchild” by Chazz Gold

“If it wasn’t for the NFT community, I would not have been sober in the pandemic,” Chazz told me. “Honestly, I wouldn’t have, I wouldn’t have made it. Because nobody would’ve known that I went out and used again.” These stories, and so many others like them, show us the life-changing power of online communities. And the connections we have made virtually will only continue to prosper as we begin to meet out in the physical world.

We have created a global community the likes of which have never been seen. And if we can tap into that community, to share our successes as well as our failures, then we will thrive, together.

Ready to get started as an artist or collector on Mint Gold Dust? Check out our Metamask start up guide to get started. Ready to start minting? Apply to talk with our curatorial team today.

4everKurious and Hazel G transformation
Weekly Recap

79 Au | 5.04-05.10 Transformation in Art

Spring is a season of transformation. After the slumber of winter, nature comes back to life. And after a period of hibernation, animals, plants, and humans leave their safe, warm spaces to rediscover their surroundings. This spring, we invite you to walk through a portal and enter a new realm.

The latest exhibition from Mint Gold Dust explores the different dimensions we create and inhabit. The artists in “Portal Realms” play with dreams, fantasies, and virtual reality. They tell stories about people and places in other worlds, using digital mediums to bring these worlds to life. As they maneuver through changes in their own lives, they explore themes of metamorphosis and the sensations of a new adventure.

“Portal Tree” by Hazel Griffiths

Hazel Griffiths Creates Entire Worlds

Hazel Griffiths has always been fascinated with the idea that there were other worlds all around us, just out of reach. “I was compelled by the notion that one could walk right into one of them through a portal or hidden tear in the fabric of reality,” she told 79 Au. In this way, ordinary objects took on a sense of wonder. She could turn anything into an agent of transformation, a trigger that made the ordinary extraordinary. Naturally, Griffiths’ interests veered into fantasy, science fiction, and the intersection of art and technology.

“When I go about creating a world or an immersive space, I think of it being part of a larger narrative,” she said. “The world itself tells a story in which the viewer is fully immersed.” Beginning with the original concept, Griffiths does her best to remain loyal to it. 


She generates artworks of many types, from motion graphics to augmented reality to virtual worlds. One concept can lead to many different outcomes. She is careful to listen to what each artwork needs in order to express itself. “One of the beautiful things about creating for VR is that you can generate multiple forms of media from a single piece,” she said. 

“For example, I have the 3D file itself, which I can upload and turn into a fully immersive experience or export for augmented reality. I can then also generate video and images from the same piece, which become separate artworks in their own right.” Sometimes, certain features like sounds or specific effects don’t conform to the rules of one world.

“I usually have a vision in mind for what I’m going to create,” she said. “Then I try to stay as true to the vision as possible. I feel it’s my duty as an artist to be as loyal to the idea, as well as the process, as I can.”

“Bounce” by 4everKurious

New Chapters for 4everKurious

Right before the pandemic, 4everKurious decided to leave her successful career as a restaurateur. She spent 40 years creating beautiful plates and enticing menus. But it was finally time to move on and to pursue a new life as an artist. When lockdown began, she purchased art supplies of all kinds and went to work. But something just didn’t clicking.

“I can’t draw, I can’t paint,” she realized. “I don’t feel free, I don’t feel creative.” After the guilt of wasting a ton of materials subsided, she donated what was left to the community center art program. It was when she discovered AI art tools that her process began to take shape. 

“When AI came along, we started having these conversations around art and AI,” she told 79 Au. “I really saw this as a way that I could be creative and think deeply about what I want. And I can use this collaboration to help me get there.”

So from the high-intensity heat of a professional kitchen, she leapt into the hotbed of AI art. And she wasn’t alone. “When the pandemic hit, I, like so many other people, ended up on Clubhouse for like 9 or 10 hours a day.” 4everKurious listened and learned at home, finding both artistic expression and community through tech. In addition to Clubhouse, 4everKurious also found herself in Midjourney’s discord, sitting in on their weekly office hours.

4everKurious’ restaurant with her artworks featured

“I didn’t totally understand AI, like how it was really doing things,” she said. “But I thought it was so cool that you could be so creative.” She began with mobile apps, many of which specialized in collage. Then as the tech continued to evolve, she moved on to other tools that her community was excited about. WOMBO led to Photoda, and an updated version of Midjourneyled to rethinking the works of the past.

“the book of wings” was the first generation of 4everKurious’ artistic journey. In it, we see moons turning into feathered creatures, butterflies into shells, birds, and wings. After many changes and experiments in style, she came back to these early works with new curiosity. “I found myself using those in the second generation. So I’m combining things with other work that I’m doing, and then I’d add photography,” she said.

Something else 4everKurious has been playing with is reusing prompts. Each tool provides a different interpretation of that prompt. Furthermore, you can even create a dialogue between prompts run through different versions of the same tool. “This is like tech and nature and everything that’s happening,” she said. “And I think it kind of also aligns with the changes in our planet. There’s also changes in our tech. And they’re both going really really fast.”

Left: “Wiggly World” an AR artwork by Hazel Griffiths, Right: “the book of wings :: deconstructed wings and bones”

Art and the Metaverse

Both Hazel Griffiths and 4everKurious have spent time sending their pieces far out into the universe. Griffiths’ work creates and adorns virtual worlds. It forces us to rethink what mediums are at our disposal and what we can do with them. “I love the experience of being transported to other worlds,” she said. “They become as real to me as any vivid dream.” And indeed, her art, which at times tap into the uncanny, might bring us back to our own dreams.

For her part, 4everKurious designs art spaces in the metaverse. “Voxels would be where I spend the most amount of time,” she said. “Knowing I could do this for free. I would do it and think, wow this is really meditative, really relaxing.” She has designed her own spaces, been invited to work on others’, and has gifted some of them to friends.

If art is a portal to the artist’s soul, then these artists are themselves portals to another realm. In that realm we see both a reflection of the present and a peek into a possible future.

Ready to get started as an artist or collector on Mint Gold Dust? Check out our Metamask start up guide to get started. Ready to start minting? Apply to talk with our curatorial team today.


79Au | 3.29 – 4.05

Curations | NFT.NYC | Mint Gold Dust event!

2022 curattion from JenJoy: CU3NTOS

Happy spring from Mint Gold Dust!

As we shed our winter layers, we’re transformed by the thoughts of warmer weather, sunshine, and regenerative vibes as we continue to cultivate and nurture the enthusiasm in the NFT and digital art spaces.

NFT.NYC is coming to New York City next week and we are excited to re-connect with our Web3 community and learn about the latest projects from the far reaches of the Metaverse.

This is an opportune time to experience the upcoming Mint Gold Dust collection, Portal Realms, put together by our good friend, artist, and curator @JenJoyRoybal.

Portal Realms upcoming curation
Portal Realms is an upcoming curation from JenJoy Roybal

JenJoy is the co-founder/CEO at SearchLight.art, a woman-led blockchain art organization championing inclusivity, diversity, and accessibility for artists of all types, from all walks.

JenJoy Roybal

Last year, JenJoy curated an amazing collection on the Mint Gold Dust platform called CU3NTOS, six pieces from LatinX, Web3 artists that reflect holding onto slipping cultural identities, recalling fading memories, and the nostalgia for the sights and sounds of our youth. 


JenJoy's "Horse-man, Fire and the Book"

JenJoy admires the viewpoints of futurist Amy Webb, professor at NYU Stern School of Business and CEO of the Future Today Institute.

In Amy’s recent talk at SXSW 2023, she shared the 16th edition of the Tech Trends Report about how signals are mixing in ways that she’s never seen before – there’s a lot of noise, and this can feel very destabilizing. She explained that even with the advances we have made in tech, there are still many biases and oversights to be on the lookout for.

Amy Webb CEO of the Future Today Institute
Amy Webb at SXSW

It’s recognized that new patterns in tech movements take some adjustment, which is a big part of the exploratory theme in Portal Realms. JenJoy believes artists play an important role in making sense of these patterns in much the same way that the artists in the 20th Century helped to make sense of the rise of the industrial age.

“The key is looking at the convergences among, and in between, these technological advancements. In the cacophony of activity is a view of what’s to come. By looking at the confluences, we are able to see a pattern.”

“I like the idea that play, poetry, and art can offer up more perspective about the future, that – with a hint of the absurd – can support this rapidly accelerated transformation we’re undergoing.” she continues, “This show gives viewers a glimpse into that critical activity.”

Look for Portal Realms in the Mint Gold Dust Curated Spaces very soon.


Next Tuesday, April 11, 5:30-7:30PM in NYC:
Our educational and explorative event for artists and art lovers:
“What’s the deal with NFTs?” 

The Yard at Herald Square

Mint Gold Dust Founder, Kelly LeValley Hunt, will address what to consider before creating an NFT, proven provenance, further opportunities for royalties, and helping to restore power to creators. 

Tuesday, April 11th from 5:30 – 7:30PM (ET).
Location: The Yard @Herald Square, 
106 W 32nd St, NYC. 

Artist Laura Umaña at The Yard Herald Square

We’ll be revealing the first NFT by current artist on display at The Yard: Herald Square, Laura Umaña.

Observe and engage in a step-by-step conversation about creating crypto art.
We would love to see you there!  RSVP here!

Check out last week’s 79Au to get a closer look into the thoughts behind some of our artist’s creations and their take on the importance of digital art. Read here.

Ready to get started as an artist or collector on Mint Gold Dust? Check out our Metamask start up guide to get started. Ready to start minting? Apply to talk with our curatorial team today.


79Au | 3.22-28

At Mint Gold Dust, we invite you to get a closer, more personal look into the thoughts and energies behind the artwork. We look for ways to bring artists and collectors together by appreciating creative vibrations in common.

We spoke with some of the artists from our platform and from our 79Au Interview Series and asked them to share thoughts about their process, how they got into digital art, and how they use NFTs as a form of expression.

Here are some of their insights.

Le Lapin Mignon “Anatomie d’Une Poussière d’Or"

In the beginning, LeLapin Mignon felt so out of place in the digital art world that she was hesitant to even use an iPad to create. When a friend from art school told her to look into NFTs and digital art, she thought it would be a difficult endeavor as a non-technical person. It ended up being wonderful, life-changing advice.

She soon realized she could reverse her usual color palette and turn up the vibrancy in ways that were unexplorable with traditional watercolor. This experimentation opened a whole new dimension of creation. This daringness was only possible with the help and support of the growing NFT community.

She now helps other artists create traditional works with embedded animation and music, exploring playful and creative digital possibilities. 

Anatomie d’Une Poussière d’Or is my very own interpretation of Gold Dust. It shines, it explodes with dreams and hopes, it sparkles with joy, while being delicate and ethereal.” Lapin is one of Mint Gold Dust’s eight Genesis artists who created digital art pieces centered around the theme of ‘gold dust’. 

Listen to the full interview here: https://bit.ly/3TXXMSm

VanDi "Avacado's"

I grew up the only son of an artist and a single mother. Art was served up daily, and even though we lived in a New York apartment, we rented a basement studio on Perry Street in the west Village. I painted and made collages up to my first year of art school.

Since 2001 I began thinking of myself as a Digital Artist. One of my first shows at the Agora Gallery in New York was titled “Pixel Perfect.” Back then, I made collages out of my photographs by mixing painted elements and individual splices from my photography. My work was unique, and most people didn’t understand Digital Art. 

NFT Art is just another extension of tech’s relationship with Art to create something new. The space is most exciting because it’s a level playing field. It brings well-deserved recognition to a new group of programmers and digital artists who the art world had yet to recognize in the past.


Read full interview: https://bit.ly/3jFzFKo

Arabella "Smoking Section"

My future is precarious having terminal cancer, and after all of my paintings sold when the news was out, I was left with no inventory. NFTs were, in a way, a solution to a problem both in regards to my digital legacy and the future of my artwork.

I had an idea to delete any trace of me online after I am gone, with the exception of my website. But many people seemed to object to this. Instead, having a little ecosystem of collectors that carry my legacy in the digital space is a pretty cool concept. And my most recent work has all been digital, not oil paint.

The thing is, most people do not understand they are leaving behind a digital dossier of their life online, so why not make certain what happens to it? 


Read full interview here: https://bit.ly/3wpbNgP

Rakkaus Art "Leaning Into the Light"

Many of the stories that live inside us can only emerge through creative expression, whether you mean to or not. Oftentimes I don’t even realize I’m telling a story until it’s finished. Painting is very meditative and a kind of intimacy with your soul that only shows up when it’s ready.

I’m working on a lot. I will likely start sharing more of my VR creations this year, just thinking of fun ways to bring it into the space. 

Otherwise, I continue to work with the human figure, abstract portraiture and digital experimentation. I enjoy discovering ways to emulate the feel of my IRL pieces through texture, brushstrokes and layers. 

-Rakkaus Art

Read full interview: https://bit.ly/3HawB21

Goldie Gold "From the Ground Up"

As a digital artist I’ve always had art on the web. Once I learned how to actually upload and post, I added my art on multiple platforms. Especially when I was blogging heavily to promote myself and other people’s content.

So entering the Web3 realm was familiar to an extent. It was just learning the new rules of the land that was actually in my favor as a digital artist. I’m still learning though. Things change in a blink of an eye with time online so it always feels like I’m playing catch up.

Life is definitely a big book of inspiration, and how you see it and gain from it will reflect in the world you create. I just so happen to see it digitally with a lot of extra colors and thick lines. So it actually works hand and hand with doing NFTs. New world on familiar grounds.

-Goldie Gold

Read full interview here: https://bit.ly/3Y9uKQz

Check out last week’s 79Au, written by one of our long-standing staff members who volunteered with ETHDenver and offers an insider’s view of the recent event. Enjoy!  https://bit.ly/42uvmn3

Ready to get started as an artist or collector on Mint Gold Dust? Check out our Metamask start up guide to get started. Ready to start minting? Apply to talk with our curatorial team today.

Weekly Recap

79Au | 3.15-21

Hello from ETHDenver Pt 3! 

This post was written by one of our long standing staff members who volunteered with ETHDenver, and offers an insider’s view of the recent event. Enjoy!

In February, I was one of the more than 15,000 participants and contributors of ETHDenver 2023, a Community and Innovation Festival that spans over a week at one of the largest gathering spaces in Denver, Colorado. 

Compared with other crypto-centric events like NFT.NYC, ETHDenver has a larger technical focus, with #BUIDLers coming from around the world to build their projects on the Ethereum blockchain.

Unlike most attendees, however, I had the unique experience of contributing to the event as a Volunteer Steward and experienced the festival from a slightly different angle.

Working diligently with other Stewards, and with the help of 200+ volunteer Crew members, The Year of the Spork quickly became one for the record books. 

The 6th annual event was host to fireside chats, solo presentations, a marathon #BUIDLathon, workshops and panels, and of course a slew of side events hosted by ETHDenver sponsors.

ETH Denver Stewards 2023
ETHDenver Crew volunteer, Henry!

While we (sometimes not so) quietly moved around the event to assist attendees, Spork Whales, and speakers, it became apparent how dedicated this unique community is, making the festival outshine its previous iteration year over year. Having volunteered for last year’s Year of the Buffigwei, I was lucky enough to see many friendly faces I’d previously met in the space. 

These same volunteers who stood outside in the surprise blizzard while greeting each and every registrant, and the same staff who’d flit from venue to venue up the block ensuring that each stage and event space could seamlessly pull off their panels and presentations, came back ready to bring it for 2023.

To better fit the growing community, the venue was moved to the sprawling National Western Complex and split into five main tracks: DAOs + Community, Decentralized Finance, Public Goods, Infrastructure, NFTs + Metaverse + Gaming.

The 3 story venue map that doesn't come close to conveying its vastness!

The frenetic energy surrounding the wide breadth of topics kept the community buzzing for the 10-day span of the festival, but two of them caught my attention, NEAR Day and the Privacy and Security Takeover. 

NEAR Protocol, a bit player at ETHDenver 2022, was front and center this year with an entire day dedicated to talks, keynotes, and workshops encompassing the ecosystem. 

A handful of the biggest names in NEAR could be caught on the smaller stages hosting chats, like Illia Polosukhin, Marieke Flament, Matt Lockyer, and Alex Chiocchi

Having learned about NEAR last year and interacting with most of these individuals on social media, it was an incredible feeling to be able to step back and listen to them speak about the protocol and the forward-thinking BOS positioning.

Marieke Flament CEO of the NEAR Foundation

Participants in NEAR Day heard about the importance of creating a seamless user experience to drive mass adoption and sustainability in blockchain by focusing on real engagement, strategic long-term planning, and overall impact of development. We were enlightened by a breakdown (and a breakup) with the way newcomers are onboarded into Web3, and of course, the value in a fully decentralized identity. 

The concepts delivered by NEAR span the entirety of the Web3 Space and reiterate what it is we’re moving toward.

Notably, we can’t move closer to mass adoption without a strong sense of security and privacy in the space, and the takeover of the Genesis Stage gave speakers an opportunity to impress this importance to the community at large. On March 4th, a series of Privacy Highlights held the stage to cover a wide span of topics from plausible deniability, attempts to encroach on privacy by outside entities, and the role Cypherpunks played in preventing users from being backdoored.

Closing with a keynote from security badass Sherri Davidoff, the founder and CEO of LMG Security, attendees (myself included) were left with a stark visual reminder that privacy is deeply interconnected with unity and security via her interpretation of the Fugio cent.

Sherri Davidoff LMG Security
An uncirculated Fugio Cent. Courtesy PCGS TrueView

The beauty of ETHDenver is the ability of like-minded individuals to gather and learn about new technologies while pushing the boundaries of what we think we know and most of the panels and conversations delivered on that. The dynamic pace created by different types of Ethereum developers and community #BUIDLers gathering in one location sparked a sense of renewed optimism and excitement for the future of Ethereum, despite current market dynamics. It reinforced its reputation for being an Innovation Festival for the Community.

  • Giraffe Cupcakes is the Community Manager at Mint Gold Dust and has been working with ETH Denver community and events in 2022 and 2023.

Denver, Colorado.

Take a look at our 79Au zine’s ETH Denver pt 1 and ETH Denver pt 2!

Learn about the Illust <> Mint Gold Dust ETH Denver culture walk showcasing amazing NFT curations at venues around Denver! Check out the Illust ETHDenver event maps here: Click to view maps

Ready to get started as an artist or collector on Mint Gold Dust? Check out our Metamask start up guide to get started. Ready to start minting? Apply to talk with our curatorial team today.