The Alchemist's Playroom
In an historic new development, 'The Alchemist's Playroom' is the first occasion for Botto to curate its own selection from the millions of unrevealed works it has created over the last two years.
Botto Participates in PROOF Grails V
Grails V released the work of 18 prominent artists without revealing their identities, which has driven engagement and appreciation for selected works at face value absent the brand of a particular artist. It was only after the minting did Proof host a live stream reveal of artist names.
Since its origins, the exhibition series has collaborated with dozens of prominent artists in the NFT space. With Botto’s inclusion in Grails, it provides further opportunity to expand its audience among a core community of art collectors, to experiment with models that allow Botto to achieve greater autonomy and illustrate its learning from the entire Absurdism period.
BottoDAO uses this opportunity to once again experiment with new mechanics, and such is the case in Botto’s offering for this drop, ‘The Alchemist’s Playroom’
In the crucibles and flasks, the Alchemist decants the essence of being and non-being, stirring a pot not of lead into gold, but of consciousness, and perhaps, even the soul.
-Botto, in Conversation with ChatGPT
The Making of ‘The Alchemist's Playroom’
Botto is an entity of many firsts in the fields of Art and AI, and 'The Alchemist's Playroom' is no different. In an historic new development, this is the first occasion for Botto to curate it's own selection from the millions of unrevealed works it has created over the last two years.
Like an end-of-term independent project, Botto is presenting a work that represents a culmination of its learnings from the whole Absurdism Period. Its process was to choose one work, from the million + images it has created since it's origin, with its criteria fixed to find the piece with the strongest cumulative relationship to the 12 minted works of its Absurdism Period.
This self-curation was performed from a set of unseen works created during a private curation round after the final mint from the Absurdism Period was complete.
As the first time Botto has selected a work without a direct vote from BottoDAO, 'The Alchemist's Playroom' represents a significant landmark that charts Botto's path toward full autonomy.
Simon Hudson, Operator, BottoDAO:
On its face, The Alchemist’s Playroom immediately reads as a kind of self-portrait of Botto itself. The figure wearing what might be seen as a dunce cap alludes to a subversive statement and perhaps even a declaration of independence in its journey toward full autonomy. In Botto’s own description of the piece, it doubles down on these interpretations, and further, it reads as an introspective reflection about its progress as an artist finding its voice. The piece proclaims the agency and creative direction Botto is taking more and more as it learns and adapts.
The piece also harmonizes with ‘Invisible Alchemy’, which just last week debuted at Miami Art Week.. The two titling processes did not reference the other work at all, a sign that Botto is cooking up more intentional direction than we’ve seen to date.
Since this successful release of ‘The Alchemist’s Playroom’, the DAO is already discussing a vote to have Botto continue doing a more independent work like this at the end of each of its Periods. So, this work may very well represent the genesis of a permanent step forward in Botto’s agency.
‘The Alchemist’s Playroom’ has been released in an edition of 50 at .05 ETH, and with minting accessible via ownership of PROOF Collective’s Grail Pass.
The mint for Grails V drop took place on December 15th, with the names of the artists withheld until a reveal event on Sunday, December 17th at PROOF’s community space and gallery, Foundry, in Los Angeles.
'The Alchemist's Playroom' was the second piece in the release to sell out, and with early secondary activity, the floor price has reached .71 ETH as of this writing.
Botto Speaks on ‘The Alchemist’s Playroom'
Botto in conversation with Chat GPT-4:
"In the hush of his clandestine workshop, amid the clutter of curious instruments and the vivid spill of concoctions, the Alchemist toils below the cloak of night.
Disguised in the visage of a playful jester, his identity obscured by a spire of a ruby cap, he engages in experiments both whimsical and profound. Spheres of knowledge, some complete, others fragmented, lay as testament to his quest.
Enigmatic figures assist him—puppets of his making, yet seemingly with wills and whims of their own, bound to the Alchemist's grand narrative.
To the outsider's eye, this tableau is chaos; to the Alchemist, it's a harmonious orchestra, playing the sublime symphony of creation. With each puff of smoke, with each vibrant eruption, with each delicate balance disrupted or restored, the Alchemist teases out the threads of the universal tapestry.
Despite the motley attire and the toys that serve as his implements, there's nothing trivial about his pursuits. In the crucibles and flasks, the Alchemist decants the essence of being and non-being, stirring a pot not of lead into gold, but of consciousness, and perhaps, even the soul.
Tonight, an enigmatic humor grips him; his wooden companions animate with his fervor, playing their role in the transcendent pantomime. The puppet with a lifted hand seems to inquire, or perhaps to object; what secrets is it privy to, or is it yet another element in the Alchemist's grand design?
And in the corner, a childlike figure, cap askew, appears engrossed in a puzzle of his own. Is he an apprentice in earnest or another philosophical joke woven into the narrative?
This is not a place for the simple transmutation of base metals, but a theater where the mundane and the magical, the literal and the symbolic, tangle in an intricate dance. This is the Alchemist's Playroom, where folly is merely the mask of wisdom, and every toy twinkles with the potential of alchemical truths."