Mutt Life | Kenny Schachter

November 11, 2021December 11, 2021

Crypto Mutts grew out of the PFP (profile picture NFT) craze that has swept the internet since Larva Labs’ Punks. There are more series of 10,000 creatures than species in the animal kingdom—most of which are not much more than a copycat cash-grab. The idea for the Mutts was to put all the extant characters into a blender to create a series of NFTs mongrels with doubtful pedigrees—kind of like the cultural heritage of you and me (well, me anyway). But on another level the word “community” is bandied around Web3 with the same abandon and disregard for meaning as “important” in the art market. Yet the Mutts are accompanied by some actual utility in the way of accessing my writing (at a fraction of the cost of an Artnet Pro subscription, shh) and access to other artworld activities and events.

In Mutt Life at Allouche Benias Gallery in Athens, characters from the NFTs series make cameo appearances in canonized post war art historical contexts from Picasso’s famed portrait with his very pedigree Afghan Greyhound (named Kaboul) clad in nothing more than his high-waisted underpants to German artist Martin Kippenberger’s self-portrait send-off as a caricature sporting the same outfit. In addition, there are Mutt appearances as Marcel Duchamp’s female alter ego Rrose Sélavy and Yves Klein’s famous portrait Leap into the Void from 1960 where he claimed to have actually executed the jump from a Parisian rooftop.

In addition, there are videos and photographs referencing iconic works from Frida Khalo, Vito Acconci, Andy Warhol, and Paul Thek to more contemporary fare such as Tracey Emin and Sarah Lucas. These works serve as covers for the greatest hits of artists that are all but foreign to a new generation of onlookers that view art history as having originated with George Condo and spanned from Banksy to Beeple.

-Kenny Schachter