Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are so trending that the rate at which people are entering that space is astronomical. Interestingly, if you want to see where NFTs are trending, head over to Twitter. If you are not on Twitter chances are high that you have no idea what NFTs are. I have covered the subject of NFTs before – I even did a whole article on them. Anyways, it is worth noting that NFTs will revolutionize every industry.

However, at the moment it seems digital art is topping the NFTs list. I once profiled a young Zimbabwean digital artist, Nyasha ‘Huliodraws’ Warambwa. He has made a name for himself globally, even getting mentions from celebrities like Drake, and Chris Brown, amongst others. He has also sold quite many NFTs. Today I talk about yet another trending Zimbabwean digital artist, Vintage MozArt.

How It All Started

He started doing art, in general, around the age of 7, 8. He then transitioned into digital art around the age of 16. Then at age of 18, that is when he launched himself as Vintage MozArt. His dad is an artist so there was that support base from early on. In varsity, he enrolled as an Architect but dropped it after just one week. Instead, he shifted to Graphic Design and never told his dad till he was in his third year of university. By the way, he did all his tertiary education in Europe (up to Masters), so he was away for quite a stretch. Currently, he is back and based in Zimbabwe.

How He Entered The NFTs Space

He first heard of cryptocurrency, particularly Bitcoin in 2015. Though he says that at first, he thought it was just some scam. He used to be indifferent to and sceptical of blockchain and digital currencies in general. Sometime between December 2020 and January was the turning point for him. He had seen a certain female digital artist selling quite some digital art pieces.

Still, at that time he was not that familiar with cryptocurrency and NFTs. He thought she was just selling jpeg pieces. So he would see stuff like, ‘… sold for…ETH’. He decided to find out what the conversions were to USD and was shocked to find that they were selling for thousands of US dollars.

Out of curiosity, he reached to that digital artist to find out how it was possible to sell jpeg pieces for that much. That is when she told him it was not just jpeg – these were NFTs. That is how the world of NFTs became an interesting thing to him. Given his artistic ability, he figured he might as well make money like that from NFTs.

Challenges In The Zimbabwe Art Scene

Vintage MozArt bemoans that the Zimbabwean art scene is generally quite challenging. He cites that in Zimbabwe there is a significant focus on mainly fine arts and sculpting. This means that there is not that much interest in or appreciation for areas like digital art. He also points out that the operating environment is riddled with political challenges as well.

He even says that it is ironic how his artwork cannot even be showcased in Zimbabwean galleries. Yet his artwork is being showcased all over the world – in countries like France, Dubai, the US, and several others. The other challenge is also the fact that cryptocurrencies are not effectively allowed in Zimbabwe. NFTs are all about cryptocurrency so that is another challenge. It is further exacerbated by the fiat currency issues as well. Here is what once happened:

Rocky First Days…

When he started gas fees i.e. money you pay to mint an NFT was quite high. Around that time it would cost around US$200. So he put together around US$450 and had to send it to his cousin in the UK via Western Union. The idea was for his cousin to then buy a cryptocurrency for him to mint his first NFT. (Perfect example of the hurdles he encounters operating in the Zimbabwean environment).

So he managed to mint his NFT (with a reserve of 0.5 ETH) on Foundation since he had gotten an invite. Unfortunately, his NFT’s description had spelling errors and he had to burn it. Burning it refers more or less to take it down. Then he had to relist it again which meant more gas money. At that particular moment, gas fees had even gone up. Guess what? He then made the same spelling error again because he just copied the previous description and the page refreshed back to it. Ultimately he went to successfully list; a bid happened and was settled. Afterwards, he went to list several successive NFTs with none of them getting bids.

So these are just some real-life accounts to accentuate the importance of never giving up. Today Vintage MozArt is one of the most successful digital artists globally. So that is the basic overview of who Vintage MozArt is. You can connect with him on Twitter. To see his work you can kindly use this link. Vintage MozArt is the co-founder of the African NFT Community. He is also a member of Black NFT Art.