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Jessica Klein is a freelance journalist whose work has appeared in The Atlantic, Fortune, The New York Times, and other publications. She is currently a contributing reporter at The Fuller Project, a nonprofit newsroom dedicated to reporting on issues that affect women.

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Join the most important conversation in crypto and Web3 taking place in Austin, Texas, April 26-28.

Encouraged by digital artist Beeple to start making 3D art daily, Fesq uses a simple, three-color palette to render futuristic stills and animations that make viewers feel like they’re in the matrix. Based in Brazil, the 25-year-old studied software engineering in college and worked as a programmer before getting into art.

Like his subject for the “Most Influential” project, Yat Siu , the entrepreneur and founder of Hong Kong-based gaming developer Animoca Brands, Fesq says he’s “pivoted a lot.” Siu “has a music background and is now working full-time in tech and gaming, which is quite a jump,” Fesq says. From programming to art, “I made that jump, too.”

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"The Maestro" (Fesq/CoinDesk)

More: An NFT of this work was sold at auction on Coinbase NFT. A percentage of the sale went to oneearth.org.

How and when did you first learn about NFTs?

I first learned about NFTs around June, July 2020. When I first heard about artists selling work for crypto, I thought, “That's definitely a scam.” I'm in Brazil, where scams are extremely common, so I stayed away from it. Then in September 2020, I saw a bunch of my artists friends jumping on board, including professional artists working with big brands, so I properly started studying NFTs. Since I have a programmer background, as soon as I understood blockchain and the smart contract infrastructure on Ethereum, I thought, “I'm convinced.”

What was your first-ever piece of NFT art, and what made it feel right for the NFT medium?

It’s called “The Dealer.” I minted it on KnownOrigin in November 2020. As soon as I understood that you're creating a record that's going to stay on the blockchain forever, I thought my first NFT should be something that captures my feelings at the time. “The Dealer” plays with the concept of my first interaction with crypto, that it was obscure and almost forbidden.

Your “Most Influential” portrait is of Yat Siu – what about his career/life most inspired your piece?

It’s not actually a portrait. It's more an artwork that represents him. I dove deep into his background and tried to interpret his career more subtly. He works in the gaming industry and co-founded Animoca Brands, which does mobile gaming. But one thing that caught my attention was that his entire family, as far as I researched, studied music. [Siu] went to a proper music university. I created [an image] called “The Maestro,” which ties his music background to his position as a leader in the gaming and blockchain industry.

What about your artistic style do you feel is a fit for capturing Siu?

Probably the colors, because he does a lot of work with gaming and is really involved in The Sandbox metaverse. A lot of metaverse art uses red, blue, and purple, which are my main colors. I naturally gravitate towards them because I'm colorblind. I work well with red and blue because they're really contrast-y. I don't see the purple very well – it was a consequence of mixing red and blue in a 3-D medium. Most of the time, I see the purple as blue. Sometimes it's pink.

Who/what are your main artistic influences?

My two main influences are a musician and a visual artist. The musician is Porter Robinson. I started getting more interested in music and art because of his music back around 2014. Because of Porter, I ended up getting to know the work of Beeple. Before NFTs, Beeple was already a notorious digital artist. He pushed me to get into 3-D digital art.

I managed to have a full circle moment when I met him later here in Brazil. As soon as I met him in person, he pushed me to get into “everydays,” making one artwork every single day. He was the most encouraging person ever.

Where do you see yourself going in the NFT art world moving forward?

It's common for people to ask me what I want to do with NFTs, and to me, the answer is not what I want to do with NFTs – it’s what I want to do as an artist. Right now, I'm trying to tie my background as a software engineer to my current work as an artist to make generative art – art that’s made with code.

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The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.

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Jessica Klein is a freelance journalist whose work has appeared in The Atlantic, Fortune, The New York Times, and other publications. She is currently a contributing reporter at The Fuller Project, a nonprofit newsroom dedicated to reporting on issues that affect women.


Learn more about Consensus 2023, CoinDesk’s longest-running and most influential event that brings together all sides of crypto, blockchain and Web3. Head to consensus.coindesk.com to register and buy your pass now.


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Jessica Klein is a freelance journalist whose work has appeared in The Atlantic, Fortune, The New York Times, and other publications. She is currently a contributing reporter at The Fuller Project, a nonprofit newsroom dedicated to reporting on issues that affect women.