College of Communication and Design Attend the NFT BZL Event to Kick-Off Art Week
By Dr. Stefanie Powers
The College of Communication and Design recently attended NFT BZL, the largest NFT event of the year, at the FTX Arena in Downtown Miami.
NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, refer to tokenizing digital art through crypto platforms—a process that allows artists to authenticate their original digital works.
NFT BZL kicked off Art Basel week and was an excellent opportunity to showcase the creative digital artwork of Lynn students and faculty from Lynn’s NFT Museum collection. Lynn was the only university in attendance exhibiting digital work.
“South Florida is the center of the crypto universe, and Lynn plays an integral part in that ecosystem,” said Cesar Santalo, Dean of the College of Communication and Design. “Lynn is one of the first universities to have a crypto wallet collecting digital assets and an NFT Museum.”
The College of Communication and Design is at the forefront of digital technology and the ongoing trends in the art world. Lynn’s NFT collection has enabled the university to build a robust portfolio of digital assets.
Members of the Lynn community that displayed NFT work included Professor Alex Duque, Professor John Conway and Andy Hirst. Digital work representations included Professor Mark Sparacio, Professor Kevin Kao, Professor Ellen Stern and students, Jaelin Forestier, Elias Soler, Christopher Hightower, Riley Stewart, Allison Yu and Joshua Middleton. “Frens” of the Lynn NFT Collection included Gianni D’Alerta, and other members of the Lynn NFT Collection that were featured include YONSON, Robert Jimenez and rwpNFT.
With more than 5,000 attendees, members gained knowledge on the NFT space in a conference-style feel while bringing the creative South Florida community together.
“Being at a historical event like this in our backyard means a lot,” said Santalo. “I was pleased with the turnout and extremely impressed with the caliber of attendees and speakers.”
Lynn Alumni Monica Rojas and Ja’dan Johnson attended the event. Borgas led the recruitment and operations for speakers at NFT BZL. There were 72 presenters, and 34 of those speakers were females.
“It was an absolute privilege to work with such high caliber speakers and still prioritize the mission of inclusivity,” said Borgas. “There was no better way to kick off Miami Art Week with anything other than NFT BZL. There was definitely magic and NFTs in the air.”
Lynn alum Johnson also attended NFT BZL and was responsible for marketing and operations, hosting several occasions, including organizing the “NFT BZL After Party.”
“I was incredibly proud to see Lynn alum at the event,” said Santalo. “Lynn graduates are at the helm of groundbreaking knowledge and creative ingenuity, business and technology.”
In addition to the Lynn alum, a “Friend of the Lynn NFT Museum,” Gianni D’Alerta attended the conference who often is found helping businesses with their blockchain and marketing, including assisting the City of Miami Mayor Suarez and Venture Miami on blockchain initiatives.
“We are at a paradigm shift in technology that affects art, business and education,” said Dean Santalo. “Lynn is delighted to continue the tradition of excellence and innovation in the NFT, Web 3.0 and gaming space. We are committed to teaching the next generation.”
Lynn’s College of Communication and Design is scheduling various events to facilitate discussions on digital art and the NFT industry, including more sustainable techniques to create and transfer assets. For more information on Lynn’s NFT Museum, contact Dean Cesar Santalo at email@example.com.\