metaverse

Bella Hadid Arrives in the Metaverse With a New Line of NFTs

Bella Hadid Arrives in the Metaverse With a New Line of NFTs

reBASE
Everyone wants a piece of Bella Hadid. Now, thanks to a new NFT (non-fungible token) platform called CY-B3LLA, they’ll be able to grab one, albeit in a modern, somewhat strange way. In collaboration with reBASE, a social metaverse site, Hadid is releasing a massive range—11,111 unique works, to be exact—of shoppable online art pieces based on her own image. These NFTs are digital assets, essentially cybernetic souvenirs or collectibles. It’s also more than just having the JPEG saved on your desktop: You receive a digital record (essentially a serial number or certificate of authenticity) that proves that you and only you purchased this specific asset. Hadid asked 10 different creatives to make art out of 3D scans of her own body, including portraits where she’s done up like an animated cyborg queen. She’s had a waiting list open for weeks, with over half a million people signing up online, and finally, now that CY-B3LLA is dropping, they’ll be able to get their own slice of supermodel right in their own inbox.
Hadid first had a kernel of the idea thanks to a lifelong interest in gaming. Growing up, her younger brother Anwar loved World of Warcraft, but Hadid herself was always attracted to the poppy universe of Mario. “My alias when I was 18, when I started traveling for work, was Princess Peach,” she says with glee over Zoom. When the world locked down due to COVID, her fascination with online life went into overdrive. “Over quarantine, my dream was to be a full gamer girl and play other people,” she says. “When the NFT craze came, I was genuinely curious about what that community looked like. It went from gaming—me wanting to create this cool avatar and be in that universe and connect with people—to this.”
reBASE
Naturally, Hadid was excited by the aesthetic possibilities of creating art out of her own image. She submitted to a 3D scan that the artists would then be able to use to create the NFTs. “There were probably 200 cameras surrounding me and I stood in the middle and changed my shape so it got all these different parts of my body, different versions of my facial expressions, fingers, toes. We wanted it to be very realistic,” she says. But beyond the look and feel of the NFTs, she built this new platform to have a community aspect. Though some of the details still sound hazy, purchasing one of Hadid’s NFTs will eventually grant you access to online and real life meet-and-greets with the model. “We’re gonna set up different events. Tokyo—I hope that’s one of our first launch spaces. It’d be an airdrop essentially: If you’re in Tokyo having coffee and all of a sudden I’m right next door to you, you’d get a ping,” she says. “Just going to different places I love and seeing the people who support me and giving them a real hug.”
Hadid certainly knows a thing or two about capturing audience attention online. She has already proven herself as World Wide Web gold. For a recent run of red carpet looks at Cannes Film Festival, for instance, she caused a small internet fashion brushfire by teaming up with stylist Law Roach for an incredible string of archival dresses, including pieces from Chanel, Tom Ford’s Gucci era, and a vintage black Versace dress from 1987 with an epic voluminous bow around the waist. “Who is the one person who could make me feel confident enough to go for my dream of doing all these archival moments? That for me is Law [Roach]. Him and I have very similar minds when it comes to fashion. I told him I wanted it to be classic old festival looks,” she says. “Donatella was nice enough to open up Gianni’s whole archive for us, which is unheard of, and I was so honored. She really had in mind exactly what she wanted for me.”
Regarding CY-B3LLA, Hadid understands that there’s some well-deserved mistrust out there about the celebrity-NFT-industrial complex. “Where that skepticism comes from is the people who just want to have a money grab,” she says. “To me, it’s so much bigger than that. I want it to be a collective. It’s not a one-stop shop—this is a real passion. I want to be used as a vessel for communication and respect and love. ”
Hadid, who has discussed her struggles with anxiety in the past, feels like these yet-uncharted metaverse spaces have potential to be healthier and happier than the online world we are all currently living in. “The whole Instagram and Twitter world, it’s out for me—I just can’t look at notifications anymore,” she says. “Once we start to be so aware of what every single person thinks of us, you start to lose track of what you need and what you want. These horrible anxieties we all have—I feel like that’s what’s circulating on the internet.” There will be a dedicated group for CY-B3LLA-ites on the Discord chat app, and she imagines popping in a couple times a week just to chat with her friends and fans in a low-impact environment made up of like minded people. Eventually, as the metaverse develops into a more fully-realized space, she hopes to find even more ways for her people to inhabit, congregate, exchange ideas, and feel at home. “There’s a scary part of the internet but there’s a really beautiful part of the internet,” she says, “and that’s people being able to find a space where they can belong.”
All in all, she’s aware of how weird this NFT and metaverse talk can sound to people not yet on board with the burgeoning movement, but she’s ready to give herself over to it all the same, one token at a time. “It’s just a beautiful way that we can have a community. I don’t know if I feel like a community leader—it’s not just about connecting me to people, but about connecting people to other people,” she says. “I just want to be an instrument.”
Originally published in Vogue.co.uk
Read next: Gigi Hadid Brings Back Everyone’s Favorite Pink + Red Color Palette With a Couture Gown by Rising Designer Sohee Park

Elie Saab, Dolce & Gabbana, and More to Participate in the First-Ever Metaverse Fashion Week

Elie Saab, Dolce & Gabbana, and More to Participate in the First-Ever Metaverse Fashion Week

The Gold Glass Dress NFT designed by Dolce & Gabbana and constructed by UNXD, a digital marketplace. Photo: Courtesy of UNXD and Dolce & Gabbana
The first-ever Metaverse Fashion Week (MVFW22) and the world’s largest virtual fashion week was recently launched by Decentraland Events. Decentraland is a 3D virtual world that runs on the Eretheum blockchain. From March 24 to March 27, the virtual fashion week will showcase over 50 international brands and creators.
Estee Lauder, Dolce & Gabbana, Tommy Hilfiger, and Elie Saab are a few of the renowned brands participating in the virtual fashion week. Presenting their latest collections, designers are provided with the opportunity to dress avatars, straying away from the traditional fashion weeks in person. A milestone in the fashion industry, Decentraland’s MVFW22 introduces a new way of looking at and presenting fashion through AI and robots and what is termed as ‘phygital goods’, whereby physical and digital meet to produce a unique experience for users.
“Through MVFW22, we endeavor to broaden the horizon of what ‘metaverse’ means,” says Sam Hamilton, foundation creative director of Decentraland. “We just leveled up the playing field for the world of fashion and decreased the limitations. Even in the metaverse, you’ll be needing a ‘fit.’”
MVFW22 has a fashion district of its own that features inter-linked catwalks, panels, and galleries for the designers. There are also mini districts within, such as the Luxury Fashion District—presented by UNXD and Vogue Arabia—hosting a number of fashion houses, brands, and designers including Dolce & Gabbana. This also includes Boson Protocol, which mimics a boulevard of metaverse stores, allowing brands to sell luxury and physical goods in the form of non-fungible tokens (NFTs.)
By signing up for free, users can attend all MVFW events, but an Ethereum wallet is necessary for purchases. The exhilarating experience includes a lot more, as Decentraland has also organized after-parties, panels, and film screenings.
Read Next: Is Digital Fashion an Eco-Friendly Replacement to Fast Fashion or a Virtual Illusion?

Now, You Can Join the Vogue Arabia Universe at the First-Ever Metaverse Fashion Week

Now, You Can Join the Vogue Arabia Universe at the First-Ever Metaverse Fashion Week

The Gold Glass Dress NFT designed by Dolce & Gabbana and constructed by UNXD, a digital marketplace. Photo: Courtesy of UNXD and Dolce & Gabbana
The first-ever Metaverse Fashion Week (MVFW22) is here, and Vogue Arabia plays a special role in the first-of-its-kind virtual fashion event. Launched by Decentraland Events, a 3D virtual world that runs on the Eretheum blockchain, MVFW22 takes place from March 24 to March 27, and will showcase over 50 international brands and creators.

How can you have the complete Vogue Arabia experience at Metaverse Fashion Week?
Always at the forefront of fashion in the region, Vogue Arabia, it comes as no surprise, is also a part of Metaverse Fashion Week. The venue includes a fashion district which features inter-linked catwalks, panels, and galleries for the designers. Within these districts is the Luxury Fashion District, in which avid readers of the magazine can enter a Vogue Arabia universe.
Presented by both UNXD and Vogue Arabia, this section, created in celebration of our 5th anniversary, comes to life at the touch of a finger, taking visitors on a red carpet journey through some of Vogue Arabia’s milestone cover and shoot moments, from Lebanon, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and more. Each striking visual unfolds to reveal a backstory you may not know, from the thought-process behind the powerful anniversary cover starring Huda Kattan, Nadine Njeim and Amina Muaddi, to special quotes from the likes of Halima Aden, Gigi Hadid, and royals including Her Highness Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak.
To add to that, the Vogue Arabia pop-up will also give fans and followers the full red carpet experience, allowing them to pose for the cameras in true celebrity style. Along with a number of fashion houses, this area also includes Boson Protocol, which mimics a boulevard of metaverse stores, allowing brands to sell luxury and physical goods in the form of non-fungible tokens (NFTs.)
What can you expect from the shows at MVFW 2022?
Estee Lauder, Dolce & Gabbana, Tommy Hilfiger, and Elie Saab are a few of the renowned brands participating in the virtual fashion week. Presenting their latest collections, designers are provided with the opportunity to dress avatars, straying away from the traditional fashion weeks in person. A milestone in the fashion industry, Decentraland’s MVFW22 introduces a new way of looking at and presenting fashion through AI and robots and what is termed as ‘phygital goods’, whereby physical and digital meet to produce a unique experience for users.
“Through MVFW22, we endeavor to broaden the horizon of what ‘metaverse’ means,” says Sam Hamilton, foundation creative director of Decentraland. “We just leveled up the playing field for the world of fashion and decreased the limitations. Even in the metaverse, you’ll be needing a ‘fit.’”
By signing up for free, users can attend all MVFW events, but an Ethereum wallet is necessary for purchases. The exhilarating experience includes a lot more, as Decentraland has also organized after-parties, panels, and film screenings.
Read Next: Is Digital Fashion an Eco-Friendly Replacement to Fast Fashion or a Virtual Illusion?

Rami Kadi Works on His First Ever Computer-Human Fashion Collaboration

Rami Kadi Works on His First Ever Computer-Human Fashion Collaboration

Photo: Courtesy of Rami Kadi
Once more, Lebanese designer Rami Kadi is stepping out of the norm and embarking on an elusive project that pays tribute to building connections between the human and computer mind. A year before Covid-19 stormed the world, Kadi was the first-ever Middle Eastern designer to present a cyber fashion show. This time, his work stretches way beyond that. His new collection, ‘Lucid Algorithms’ demonstrates the first ever human-computer collaboration of its scale, and is reshaping the stigmas around the relationship between reality and the digital sphere.
Kadi often challenges design barriers by working on new concepts that have never been applied before. For ‘Lucid Algorithms’, the designer conceptualized the main elements that would create the basis of his new line, then fed them into a special algorithm, understanding how the artificial mind breaks down physical beauty. The collection of 40 ensembles features the visuals that were co-created with the algorith.
Rami Kadi’s digital-physical collab will be showcased at Paris Fashion Week, during which he will also conduct a private viewing of his SS 2022 collection, that releases on January 25. This private viewing highlights how the gap between traditional couture and modern age technology can be bridged.
For the house of Rami Kadi, 2022 is all about digital innovations. In case you missed it, the Lebanese designer will also be releasing his first NFT collection on February 2. This collection will act as the first step towards a new journey that the house plans on following in the following years, and reflects its commitment to the metaverse. The launch will follow the mint by a week, where 120 tokens will be available to purchase on Rami-kadi.com, making him the first designer to launch a collection on the Cardano blockchain.
Read Next: Abu Dhabi Art to Sell an NFT of the UAE’s Gift to Pope Francis for Charity

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