An NFT of Chadwick Boseman to be created in conjunction with gift bags for Oscar nominees is being redesigned in the wake of his best actor loss.
After Boseman took home the best actor prize at the Golden Globes, Critics Choice Awards and Screen Actors Guild Awards, many people assumed the Academy Awards would follow suit. In a surprising upset, Anthony Hopkins received the final prize of the night for his performance in Florian Zeller’s “The Father,” making him the oldest actor to receive an Oscar in history.
The Distinctive Assets company, which provides gift bags to awards shows and is not affiliated with the Oscars, offered an NFT (non-fungible token) of a 3D digital tribute dedicated to Boseman. The artwork was created by animator Andre Oshea, who works on NFT artwork that explore futuristic and spiritual themes.
Oshea said he will be donating 50% of the proceeds to the Colon Cancer Foundation, which fights against the same disease that took Boseman’s life last August. The artist was told that the foundation would fund 10,000 colorectal cancer screenings in underserved communities this year.
“The way to immortalize an artist, is to honor them with art,” Oshea tweeted on Saturday. “I was tasked to create a tribute NFT for Chadwick Boseman for the Oscars! Bringing this piece to life has been one of my most challenging & rewarding experiences as an artist.”
The way to immortalize an artist, is to honor them with art.
I was tasked to create a tribute NFT for Chadwick Boseman for the Oscars! Bringing this piece to life has been one of my most challenging & rewarding experiences as an artist.
— ●●● (@andreoshea) April 24, 2021
In addition to Boseman losing the Oscar to Hopkins, many Twitter users accused Oshea of stealing the 3D print model of Boseman’s head. They came to this conclusion after one user found a royalty-free license for the same model of Boseman’s head that can be purchased on CGTrader for $50. According to the general terms and conditions posted on the website of the 3D model marketplace, if the seller does not indicate any contradicting licensing conditions, the buyer has the right to distribute the artwork as an “incorporated product” in any rendered still or moving images.
While Oshea was planning on auctioning his NFT of Boseman on Rarible, he took it down and released an official statement regarding the controversies surrounding his artwork. Calling the past week “a huge learning experience,” the artist said he will be redesigning the artwork and putting it up for auction later this week. Oshea is still planning on donating half of the funds raised to the Colon Cancer Foundation.
“I wanted to create a digital monument that embodied Chadwick’s influence as a hero to all the Black kids everywhere while raising awareness about colon cancer and its impact on Black communities,” Oshea said in a statement. “I now recognize that Chadwick’s face is a triggering reminder of his death rather than life, and I will be redesigning the artwork to be auctioned off later this week. I appreciate all of the love and support from both community and strangers and I’m motivated to push forward this piece.”
Correction: A previous version of this report said the NFT had been commissioned by the Oscars. The company that offered the gift bags has no affiliation with AMPAs or the Academy Awards and offers the bags to nominees independently.