-By Diego Dietrich

On May 3, 2012, the first one-off N.F.T. was created in New York, but it was the sale of Beeple’s “Everydays: The First 5000 Days” that was auctioned at Christie’s on March 11, 2021, almost nine years to the day of that first NFT, that sold for over $69 Million USD, launching this new digital proof of ownership into a mass market frenzy.

Super Buddha, an internationally recognized contemporary artist who calls Miami, Florida home has positioned himself into the lead of contemporary artists transitioning into the N.F.T. Blockchain. Coming off a highly successful launch of new N.F.T.s at NFT BAZL, Super Buddha is now partnering with Fort Lauderdale’s own New River Fine Art for an exclusive launch of 3 new N.F.T.s on August 13, 2021. These new N.F.T.s flip the script on gaming by animating his 32-bit buddha as a token of enlightenment that brings blessing to retro-inspired video game worlds.

These highly anticipated gaming culture, crypto-native, and culturally relevant N.F.T.s by Super Buddha highlight his love for 1980’s and 90’s video game nostalgia and help bring a positive message to the impassioned contexts of gaming.

As a non-native Chinese artist living in Shanghai, Super Buddha began creating art in a hybrid environment of new and old, where the constant influx of Western pop culture influences clashed with the strict and ridged ways of the Hukou System. Coming of age as one of the pioneers of the Graffiti scene in Shanghai, Super Buddha found himself straddling two very distinct artworlds - the iconic Eastern Art and the Urban Art Culture. Being one of the first artists to tag buildings in Shanghai, he risked life and limb to help establish a new style of street art that did not yet exist in this heavily populated area of China.

Lisa Burgess, President of New River Fine Art proudly remarks that “Super Buddha has a unique ability to tell a story in the most interesting of ways. On the surface, his N.F.T.’s are inspired by retro video games and full of positive messaging. However, there are underlying narratives that are influenced by modern advances like cryptocurrencies and blockchain technologies. Deep within these plots come a more vocal examination and analysis of international political climates like the threat of government interference on autonomous decentralizations, and the consequences of oppressive regimes. In the end, the juxtaposition of good and evil on his signature character, ‘Super Buddha’, reinforces a mental exercise we can all practice - Reject the impulses of materiality while reflecting on life lessons with upbeat gusto.”

Super Buddha’s lighthearted artwork features Buddha as a contemporary spokesperson that captivates the audience with witty one-liner blessings. Exhibited as a repetitive and reductively minimalistic bust of a bubbly cheeked, straight teethed, and large-eyed figure, this bald Chosen One is eternally cheery with his signature long earlobes that symbolize a conscious rejection of the material world in favor of a more spiritual enlightenment.

In Super Buddha World: Forbidden City, the first of the three new N.F.T.s, we witness Super Buddha, complete with his cape and smilingly ambitiously, crushes and destroys negativity through superpower strength that seems to gain forte in a certain crypto world tenacity, as he navigates his way through temples and avoids the pop-up pitfalls. Exploding scrolls of Envy, Jealousy, Self-Doubt, and Negative Thoughts, Super Buddha is on a quest for spiritual teachings.

Buddha Man is a clear example of multilayered content. In the N.F.T., the floating deity head devours the Bitcoin balls and gains super strength gulping down the dollar sign money bags while avoiding the bad vibe ghosts. When the red ghosts turn blue, Buddha Man swallows them down. But not all as it appears. There is a subtle, but evident social / political context waiting to be discovered. In the storyline, Super Buddha has used his main characters to show a clear correlation between how the Chinese government is currently treating crypto miners and the hunger they have for freedom, while being chased and prosecuted by their oppressors. In the N.F.T. narrative, the bitcoins enable Buddha Man to turn the tables on his tyrannical antagonists. The artist has made this intentionally clear with clever symbols and moves that speak volumes of today’s international cultural climate. Memorable Mottos like, “Your thoughts become your reality”, “Be Grateful”, and “Do it out of Love” appear like welcomed pop-up banners of positive reinforcements as Buddha Man stays the course in the most maze-more-izing of ways.

Buddhas Grand Blessings (Shanghai Edition) mimics the free roaming, role-playing, and first-person perspective games. Grey and anonymous people wait for Super Buddha to ‘bless’ them with enlightenment by awakening their spirituality, activating their colorful chakras, and give them purpose through healing. Super Buddha imagines this bestowment of wisdom as a counteracting weapon to the current video game controversies of addiction, aggression, and violence.

Super Buddha sees his artwork as a positive propulsion strategy to spread the message that there should be positivity and consciousness in every facet of life. "I see so many things wrong on the spiritual and humanistic level, so my art's intent is to shed more light on consciousness and provide good fortune to everyone,” says Super Buddha.

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