ABOUT THE FONDATION VASARELY RESTORATIVE NFT COLLECTIONS

What makes the ‘Universe’ NFTs so special? They’re not simply recreations of Victor Vasarely’s artwork in token form; the proceeds from the sale of the 12 unique Victor Vasarely NFT artworks will go to the Fondation Vasarely, a museum in Aix-en-Provence, France, designed by and dedicated to the artist. 

Fondation Vasarely is formed of 16 hexagons which create seven ‘cells’ or rooms representing periods of Victor Vasarely’s work. The cells hold a total of 44  integrations, and each of the NFTs in the Vasarely Universe Collection is a digital representation of one of these integrations, the funds of which will help restore the works and the space itself. 

There are 6 NFTs within the collection that are coded via their smart contract to alter over time. These works will change in appearance, displaying the evolution of the repair works that the sale will enable – poetically ‘healing’ to illustrate their point and purpose. 

Fondation Vasarely in Aix-en-Provence, France – © Fondation Vasarely / Photo: Fabrice Lepeltier

There are physical utilities on offer to holders of the Vasarely NFTs. Buyers of the ‘Universe Damaged’ 1/1 artworks ’Our-M.C.‘ and ‘Zett‘, will be able to visit the Fondation Vasarely as a VIP guest and receive a private tour and dinner within the grounds. What’s more, they will also have a physical plaque with their name on display within the museum. 

Four other damaged artworks, ‘Gestalt’, ‘Axo’, ’Tlinko‘ and ’Majus‘, are available in editions of 15. The owners of these will be able to visit the Fondation Vasarely as a VIP guest, receiving a private tour within the grounds, and the option to have their name on a physical plaque within the museum, along with the other 14 owners.

Owners of six of the non damaged artworks grant the buyer the right to be a Patron of Fondation Vasarely.

Victor Vasarely his workshop, working with his ”Alphabet Plastique” | Victor Vasarely in his atelier – © Fondation Vasarely

Victor Vasarely was a scientist, an artist and an inspiration to many – including the likes of David Bowie for whom he created the album artwork for ‘A Space Oddity‘. His creative processes were combined with his love of mathematics and technology; his life’s work was the study of employing analogue tools to create systems for image making. 

In 1960 he developed ’Alphabet Plastique’, a formal visual language composed of units of shapes and colours that could be combined to create infinite possibilities. The program was universally legible and infinitely permutable — comparable to the human equivalent of what we know as coding, before the term ever existed. It allowed for art to be accessible for everyone. Back in 1960, Vasarely predicted something similar to what we know now as NFT exhibitions: I can well imagine that we generate complete exhibitions by simply projecting them on the walls.”

Victor Vasarely in his atelier & Victor Vasarely on the construction site of the Vasarely Foundation in 1976 – © Fondation Vasarely

Although not able to see the transformation of his art into NFTs, Victor Vasarely always combined his artistic creative processes with a love of mathematics and technology. Back in 1960, he predicted something similar to what we know now as NFT exhibitions: I can well imagine that we generate complete exhibitions by simply projecting them on the walls.”

His life’s work was the study of employing analogue tools to create systems for image making. In 1960 he developed ’Alphabet Plastique’, a formal visual language composed of units of shapes and colours that could be combined to create infinite possibilities. The program was universally legible and infinitely permutable — comparable to the human equivalent of what we know as coding, before the term ever existed.  It allowed for art to be accessible for everyone. 

BLACK AND WHITE PERIOD: CELL 4 featuring ‘MANIPUR’ and ‘PYR DAC’ 

 Cell 4 of the Fondation Vasarely – Pyr Dac, 1967-1975, 594 x 594 x 110 cm (LEFT) ; Caracas, 1967-1975, 566 x 484 cm (CENTER) ; Tukoer, 1967-1975, 540 x 484 cm (RIGHT) – © Fondation Vasarely

Known as the ‘Father of Op-Art’, Vasarely loved to explore geometric shapes and kineticism in his work. Optical Art uses the viewer’s perception to explore the limits of human vision through the creation of optical effects. It wasn’t until the emergence of Op-Art that the mechanics of the gaze were given priority over the image itself, with the viewer becoming a subject of the artwork. His work ‘Zebra’ (1937) is generally regarded as one of the first examples of Op-Art (27 years before the term was coined by Time magazine), and there are parallels with the foundations of Op-Art and today’s modern generative art and NFTs. 

PLANETARY FOLKLORE PERIOD : CELL 5 featuring ‘ZETT’ ‘MAJUS’ and ‘Our-M.C. – © Fondation Vasarely

At the heart of the Fondation is Cell 5, where the viewer can stand centrally and see all the other hexagonal cells in the museum. This room displays Vasarely’s Alphabet Plastique method – the tool that, according to him, enabled his work and methods to be integrated into architecture. In his book ‘Notes Brutes’, published in 1956, Vasarely clarified his vision: “I believe I have discovered an organic plasticity. The ‘unit’ is a chromosome that generates the tissues of the most beautiful plasticity, a promise of survival.” One of the brightest works in Cell 5, ‘Majus transcribes a musical score, a fugue by Bach. Cell 5 also houses the two 1/1 pieces in the ‘Universe Damaged’ collection, ’Our-M.C.‘ and ‘Zett‘.

UNIVERSAL EXPANSIVE REGRESSIVE STRUCTURE PERIOD: CELL 6 featuring ‘VEGA ANNEAUX’ ‘OND’ ‘CHET-STRI’ and VEGA ZETT – © Fondation Vasarely

The moon, space, geometry and the unknown were frequent inspirations in Vasarely’s Op-Art. Deeply influenced by news reports in the 1960s about mysterious signals received from distant galaxies and, then, the moon landing in 1969, Vasarely named many of his works after stars and constellations – most notably in artworks from his ‘Universal Expansive Regressive Structures’ and ‘Vega’ periods, which are housed in Cell 6 in the Fondation. One of these works, Chet-Stri’, relies on convex-concave distortions of a grid-like network, a sophisticated combination of the cube and the sphere, symbolically referring to the two-way motion of the light that emanates from pulsating stars, and to the functioning of condensing galaxies and the expanding universe. 

TRIBUTE TO THE HEXAGON PERIOD: CELL 7 featuring ‘AXO’ and ‘GESTALT’

Cell 7 of the Fondation Vasarely – DIA Or, 1956-1975, 554 x 554 (LEFT) ; Gestalt, 1969-1975, 575 x 594 cm (CENTER-LEFT) ; Tau Ceti, 1955-1975, 554 x 554 cm (CENTER-RIGHT) ; Axo, 1968-1975, 552 x 522 cm (RIGHT) – © Fondation Vasarely

Vasarely’s ‘Gestalt’ series crosses over with his ‘Tribute to the Hexagon’ series – the works combining the trompe l’oeil effects of his earlier works with elements of his ‘Alphabet Plastique’.  Images are characterised by solid-yet-ethereal and seemingly impossible three-dimensional shapes composed of cubes and cellular-like structures that visually confuse the viewer. ‘Axo’ expresses Vasarely’s fascination with the hexagon as a shape that could be transformed into “a perspectivally unstable Kepler’s cube”. ”In this manner,” Vasarely noted, ”the structure becomes more dynamic, yet visually more labile.”

Gestalt’ is an observation on Gestalt philosophy – the idea that the human brain will attempt to simplify and organise complex designs that consist of many components, by subconsciously arranging the parts into an organised system that creates a whole, rather than just a series of random elements.

Cell 8 of the Fondation Vasarely – © Fondation Vasarely

Terms & Conditions: All intellectual property rights pertaining to this NFT remain the exclusive property of Victor Vasarely’s successors. The visual elements of this NFT cannot in any way be used in any form whatsoever, with the exception of private and free representations made exclusively within a family circle and reproductions strictly reserved for the private use of the copier and not intended for collective use, and free representations in digital environment called the metaverse.