NFTs, DAOs, and crypto-culture – The YAP Global squad takes Miami for DCentral and Art Basel

An inside look at two days in Miami for the DCentral Miami Conference, exploring NFTs and the fast-paced crypto-culture.

Last week, 4 YAP team members had the privilege of attending DCentral Miami, to manage the Press Room and meet with top projects in the NFT, crypto, and DAO space.

DCentral Miami is more than just the biggest NFT and DeFi Conference – it’s a symbolic starting point for all future DeFi Conferences connecting communities through art, culture, and crypto. There is room for us all in the blockchain ecosystem, and this event is a perfect opportunity to celebrate just that. We can now geek out over our NFT passions with each other in person, something even a short year ago wasn’t possible.

The infectious momentum revitalized the streets of Miami during Art Basel week. As builders and developers gathered to discuss all things crypto, we also saw designers, artists, and musicians from five continents showcase their fascinating projects, illuminating new ways crypto can be tied to art. Miami was the pulse of creativity this week to say the least. 

A rambunctious crowd piled into the Miami Convention Center for interactive demos, panels,  and keynote speeches covering 3 stages. A full week of networking and wisdom lied ahead as the excitement and curiosity from participants pushed us through this inaugural conference!

One unique aspect of this event is the NFT Gallery featuring over 40 artists. One of those artists include Alan Argollo, the founder of Maddie’s Co, a platform where NFT owners can monetize their NFTs safely in their digital wallets.

Through the licensing of NFT’s, Maddie’s seeks to monetize the artwork of NFTs through multiple mediums and pay the NFT owners any royalties on every piece sold. Users can let their imagination run wild and add their NFTs to everything from pillows (which are wildly popular), home decor, apparel and accessories.

No surprise here, but Alan mentions, “It’s been a crazy year for us, it’s blown up. We sold 12,000 items of merchandise just last month.” 

It all started when Alan was looking for a way that NFTs could work for the creators and make some money. Alan remembers, “I kept asking myself ‘what’s next?”’

Alan fostered that curiosity to create his own business with one key attribute he wanted to keep focused on – authentication. Everything is uploaded directly in the wallet and users pay for the products on the block chain as well.

On the other side of the NFT Gallery with an astounding large ape lingering by the booth, was Cyberkongz who is working on growing the virtual reality ecosystem.

Cyperkongz is a virtual community that was created in March 2021 where NFT apes roam and rule the earth. The project works on profile picture projects with utility as well a community meta verse that is also going to be incorporating a lot of game mechanics.

As it’s a community driven ecosystem, Mtlforbrkfst, Council of Kongz, illustrated, “We aim to give it back and reinvest in the project.”

Community members live out their “give back” promise specifically through gorilla preservation efforts like at the Viringa National Park

A few booths away at the NFT Gallery, another DAO community working towards expanding the digital ecosystem was Digitalax, the first NFT live market that brings users unique style into native digital realms. Digitalax has a trading token on the Ethereum blockchain and also provides users with  core platforms such as Digitalax and the Global Design Network. The Global Design Network is the heart of the organization, it consists of more than 200 designers that collaborate and participate within the DAO. Digitalax is the marketplace that provides digital fashion, resources and partnerships for the designers and users. In addition, there is a gaming community that allows the digital fashion community to participate in competitive indie games.

Community member Laurent  explains how the whole vision started with a web3 virtual fashion week. The base structure is built on an open source code from the marketplace where each designer can create their own brand through a “designer realm”. Right now, there are 5 distinct designer realms, each having one vision.

Digitalax prioritizes inclusivity for all different body sizes as the user not only can buy NFT fashion designs, but also the physical clothing item. After seeing first hand the phenomenal designs, it’s clear that these designers have a unique creative voice that could have been squashed while they worked in the real-world fashion industry. It was inspiring to see these one-of-a-kind artists rewarded for owning and expressing their own flair.

“Most of the designers are coming from the traditional fashion industry and they experienced an exploitative and non-transparent environment putting themselves up against each other to compete and working their ass off for nothing.” Laurent shared, “There’s a frustration.”

“This community speaks to people to empower designers to create their own thing. We are trying to give each designer the tools to create their own path and collaborate with each realm.”

Different decentralized communities hold the same values to be true, an inclusive, transparent and balanced ecosystem. With more than 40 NFT showcasing their projects within a space that seems to grow by the thousands each day, this event is such a stellar combination of both the physical and digital ecosystems tying in TradFi and the arts and culture scene for a better future.

The bold and riveting art that was on display throughout the entire NFT Gallery was electric and attracted not only myself to walk through numerous times, but many attendees as well. This part of the conference was always full with wide-eyed, mouths gaped open attendees, just as energized as myself. Coming out of more than a year filled with quiet and solitude for many of us, it’s time to take this built up velocity to spark some new creativity into the new year.

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