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Going from AI to NFT to DAO to Fractionalized Art

Schiele's Ghost Reloaded 2023


"May you live in interesting times" was the slogan of the 2019 Venice Biennale. The last "normal" before the world changed, before the pandemic swept over us and seemed to tear everything apart.

An ancient curse seems to have caught up with our present. Or is this just a part of human history repeating itself? Pandemics and diseases have always intervened in societies, changing, killing and reshaping everything. Is this time different?

The last pandemic in Europe that was both similar and different to Corona today was the Spanish flu.

One of its most famous victims was the Austrian artist Egon Schiele - the virus did not spare him either. He died in 1918, at a time when there was no vaccination and probably no state aid to help the survivors survive.

Egon Schiele died at the height of his career, and a century later our society, the one we live in today, is experiencing a similar scenario. Much more muted, but still comparable. Is history repeating itself in a modern way? Have we learned and evolved as a society, or are we doomed to repeat ourselves?

We live in interesting times, don't we?



Who is?

Egon Schiele (1890–1918) was an Austrian expressionist painter known for his intense and provocative portraits and self-portraits, often characterized by raw emotion, bold lines, and a focus on sexuality and the human form. His work was both celebrated and controversial during his short life, and he is now considered one of the leading figures of 20th-century art.

„Ich bin alles zugleich – aber niemals werd' ich alles zu gleicher Zeit tun.“

Egon Schiele, 1910


What is?

Schmiede Hallein is an annual artists' festival in Hallein, Austria, focused on collaboration and experimentation across disciplines, taking place in an old salt refinery and gathering creators from areas like digital art, music, and film. It provides a platform for collaboration, discussion, and showcasing new ideas and projects.

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In 2020, I, s.myselle (Stephanie Meisl) was invited for an artist in residence at Schmiede Hallein, Austria.

My plan was to explore what art, being human and artificial intelligence are about from an artist's perspective. 

The result was a chapter in the book Horses: CoEvolution Storytelling Future, by Rüdiger Wassibauer and Bernhard Förg, in which I wrote about my dystopian experiences with artificial intelligence, how I witness society and art changing - and during the pandemic I talked to a lot of people in and around AI about this technological shift. Trying to understand and deal with what is coming.


Because AI has come to stay.


Martin Gasser was one of the AI artists with whom I had the most interesting conversations. We eventually agreed to do an AI project together. Inspired by the AI-generated Filmscript Sunsring, our very first attempt was to create a machine learning tool that would generate an Austrian film script.


What is?

Sunspring is a 2016 experimental science fiction short film entirely written by an artificial intelligence bot using neural networks

The script of the film was authored by a recurrent neural network called long short-term memory (LSTM) by an AI bot named Benjamin.


During this very first trial I learned how important data cleansing is and that what data bias. Initially, we wanted to figure out the essence of the Austrian Film. A limited Data Set, like the one of Austrian Film Scripts, would do, so we thought. But we learned that in the Austrian Film Archive we not only have a lot of not digitalized film scripts that need to be restored first, but we also have a bias problem. A relevant 

For our first experience we chose the script Egon Schiele: Death and the Maiden, written by Hilde Berger and Dieter Berner.


This opened up a new world for us to understand the technologie and digging deeper into Egon Schiele's world. Our first test was setting up a machine learning model to write new dialogues. During that time the outcome was rather irrational, than usable.



What is?

NFTs are unique digital tokens on a blockchain that represent ownership and authenticity of specific virtual items or content.


A whitelist is a pre-approved list granting certain users exclusive access or privileges, often used in NFT sales to prioritize specific participants. It is a VIP list. Being on it means early access to special digital art.


The PINKLIST was introduced as an inclusive alternative to traditional NFT whitelists, ensuring participants have ample time and fostering personal connections with each Schiele's Ghost NFT owner.

In 2021, the NFT universe introduced so-called "whitelists", which were used as a marketing and engagement strategy to quickly sell NFTs to a large community that would later speculate on them on the secondary market.


The problem is that if you are not technologically advanced or fast enough, it is almost impossible to get a real chance to be on these lists. Plus, it is a highly volatile and unstable world.

Therefore, I introduced the PINKLIST. It should take away the FOMO (fear of missing out) and allow people with enough time to participate. I am also trying to get to know each owner of these Schiele's Ghost NFTs. 

In the first round, over 250 people were personally invited to participate in the Schiele's Ghost project. 

I invite you, dear reader, to choose your "Schiele's Ghost" and become part of this art project. 

Click here to get to the Pinklist



All NFTs are listed on Rarible on the Tezos blockchain, waiting to be transferred to their owners' wallets. Once an owner has received their Tezos wallet, we will transfer the NFT as proof of origin. 

Each owner of a Schiele's Ghost NFT and the real digital print signed by s.myselle will own 1/10,000 of the full image. The full image itself will be divided into 4 sections of 2,500.


The owner will own 1/2,500 of that section if their NFT is in one of those 4 sections. 

If someone collects all 2,500 NFTs of a section - he/she can take the picture home. 

My bet is that it will never happen that all 10,000 Schiele's Ghost pictures will ever be in one real world place again.



What is?

For art enthusiasts, fractionalized art offers a novel way to engage with treasured artworks by owning a "piece" of them. This concept is like sharing slices of a chocolate cake: instead of having the entire cake, you have a part, but you still get to enjoy it. Using blockchain technology, valuable artworks are divided into "shares" or "tokens." When individuals purchase these shares, they own a portion of the artwork. This allows for wider participation in the art market, giving many the chance to enjoy and own parts of high-value art that they might not afford entirely.

Fractional ownership enables enthusiasts to curate personalized collections reflecting their tastes. It provides a richer understanding of art's evolution and societal impact. More than a financial venture, fractionalized art deepens engagement, allowing enthusiasts to bond closely with artworks, artists, and art movements. It's like a communal art puzzle, where everyone gets to join in on the experience.

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