“If an artist is a director, I’m the producer. I sit behind the scenes and suggest possible avenues.”
An attorney and entrepreneur living in Venice, California, Artie Handz (a.k.a. @punk7635) is a fifth-generation cattle rancher with a deep Scandinavian heritage. He’s an avid art collector “with 3 boys under 5 and no wall space.” After writing a paper on the future of banking for an MBA program, he became fascinated by the world of decentralization and digital assets and dropped down the rabbit hole into web3. “I had no idea this was happening when I wrote it. Then I was predicting that everything was going to be digitized within 10 years. That’s how I was thinking.”
After going back and forth on whether to invest, Artie finally pulled the trigger – while slightly intoxicated – on his birthday, buying his trademark Punk. This would mark the start of his widely sought-after NFT collection. Having accumulated over 17,000 followers in 18 months, it wasn’t long until people took notice of his great eye for art, specifically.
However, as impressive as Artie Handz’s collection is, he has experienced the agony and ecstasy that comes with buying NFTs: “I’ve had huge wins and I’ve bought the dumbest things ever.” Losses led him to adjust his style, going against the grain of short-term trading. “I thought to myself, I’m not going to be an art flipper; I’m going to be the guy with diamond hands who holds long term.”
After becoming more involved in the community, he saw himself as a facilitator for NFT creatives and began to collaborate with like-minded artists and found quick success, raising over 20,000 USD for a food-based charity with his “Proof of Steak” collection created with artist Jules Schratter. “If an artist is a director, I can be the producer. I sit behind the scenes and suggest possible avenues.”
Regarding the style of art that excites Artie Handz, he keeps a close eye on NFTs that 1) push the envelope of the blockchain medium. “I always ask myself before buying a piece, ‘WHY is this on the blockchain?’” and 2) address topics with humor. “I look out for things that are funny because it resonates … To me, it’s a public good.”
The desire to evoke positive emotion and collaborate with young and talented artists is a sign of good things for the NFT community.