Jack Butcher, an advertising expert turned NFT sensation, is wrapping up his Checks project with a new installment called Checks Elements, marking 100 days since its launch. This exciting addition includes 152 generative art pieces, offering collectors tangible companions to their digital assets.
Well-known auction house Christie’s will host an auction featuring three pairs of prints and NFTs on its 3.0 NFT platform. The auction will occur from May 16 to 23, and the prints will be shipped starting May 24.
Butcher released the Checks project earlier this year, which gamified the collection of Twitter checkmarks and generated over $50 million. The game involved a 24-hour blitz where open-edition NFTs were sold for $8.
Collectors were then encouraged to burn these NFTs to obtain an on-chain grid with 80 checkmarks, which could be burned with another to create a 40-checkmark NFT. The game continued until collectors reached the final goal of acquiring a single black check.
Butcher’s previous NFT foray
Butcher had previously amassed a dedicated following and achieved hundreds of millions in sales through his Visualize Value NFT series.
These works aimed to communicate significant concepts through easily understandable graphics. For instance, the artwork “Tool” portrays a flint juxtaposed with an iPhone, while “Delivery” features a postage stamp alongside a red notification symbol.
The minimalist style that Butcher adopts can be traced back to his background in commercial design. Through this experience, he recognized his most extraordinary talent in distilling complex ideas into simple diagrams and visuals.
New installment process, details
For this new installment, Butcher has ventured into the pre-internet era, combining Checks with ancient symbols from humanity’s analog history — earth, water, air and fire — with symbols of the digital age.
An accompanying artwork is produced by printing it on carefully chosen paper using a lithographic press. The prints measure 30 by 42 inches and are organized into six tiers, starting from Alpha with four prints and culminating in Complete with 64 prints.
Speaking to Artnet News, Butcher explained that the concept of a simple one-click process is uninteresting when bringing Checks into the physical realm. He emphasized that Checks is primarily focused on authentication, drawing parallels between the creation of generative algorithms and the printing process.
Butcher also highlighted the significance of having constraints and incorporating variables to generate specific outcomes, saying that it is a labor-intensive and artisanal procedure.
The artist collaborated with esteemed printmaker Jean Robert Milant, known for his association with renowned artists like Ed Ruscha, John Baldessari, Mark Bradford and Judy Chicago throughout the past five decades.
This collaboration can be seen as a significant achievement for Butcher, whose previous work had been more aligned with the crypto community rather than the realm of fine art.
It required Butcher’s willingness to delve into the physical creation process. The collaboration involved a two-day meeting and extensive trial-and-error sessions where they experimented with crayons, pencils and ink washes.
Despite his digital expertise, Butcher values physical art, believing it aligns more closely with the essence of art.