Kate Moss auctions Sleep With Kate video as non-fungible token

Supermodel is one of a number of famous women asserting control of their image online

Kate Moss joins a growing number of female celebrities who are attempting to take back some control of their own image using the new art form of NFTs (non-fungible tokens) – one-of-a-kind assets that are linked to photos, videos, audio and other types of digital files, and can be bought and sold.

The supermodel is auctioning a video of herself sleeping, called Sleep With Kate, which is attracting bids of up to £11,000. It is being sold with two other NFTs, also video artworks, Walk With Kate and Drive With Kate, with all proceeds going to the mental health charity Gurls Talk.

In a statement on Instagram, the supermodel said: “Time is the thing that there is never enough of. I’m intrigued by who will want to own a moment of mine. I was also drawn to the idea that this ownership can be used to help others in need hopefully gain more of it.”

In April the model Emily Ratajkowski announced she was auctioning an NFT of herself standing in front of an image by the photographer Richard Prince. “The digital terrain should be a place where women can share their likeness as they choose, controlling the usage of their image and receiving whatever potential capital attached,” she tweeted. “Instead, the internet has more frequently served as a space where others exploit and distribute images of women’s bodies without their consent and for another’s profit.”

She said she wanted to use the new medium of NFTs to set a precedent for women and ownership online through a blockchain – a set of digital contracts – that “allows women to have ongoing authority over their image and to receive rightful compensation for its usage and distribution”.

Others such as Zoë Roth, the woman in the disaster girl meme, and Laina Morris, behind the Overly Attached Girlfriend meme, sold their photos as an NFT for $500,000 and $411,000 respectively, gaining ownership back of an image that was shared by millions.

“Images in the public domain are owned by everyone by definition,” said Amit Katwala, the senior editor of Wired UK. “NFTs are attaching the notion of ownership to something that can’t really be owned – you don’t own the image itself but you own the right to call yourself the owner of that image.”

The fashion designer Edeline Lee, who makes NFT clothing – fashion items that exist only in the digital world – believes this conversation is still evolving. “People in the crypto universe have different tastes and viewpoints from the ‘flat’ world, so the market and the narrative is being formed around their values,” she said. “Blockchain technology is great because authenticity and ownership is indisputable, and everyone can publicly see who exactly owns the piece.”

Elena Silenok, the CEO of Clothia, a fashion company that creates clothing in NFTs, agrees. “The rules haven’t yet been set in stone,” she said. “[They] are still a very new medium, so we are very excited to see what the future holds. The fundamental benefits surrounding ownership and transparency are so tremendous that I’m sure we’ll continue to see new use cases across industries – be it in the form of experiences, art or access.”

Contributor

Priya Elan Deputy fashion editor

The GuardianTramp

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