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Ukraine Launches NFT Museum in a Bid to Preserve National Heritage

NFT Museum of War logo

In a move that will attempt to preserve the heritage of the country, Ukraine has said that it will launch an NFT museum. The Black Sea country has been invaded by its neighbour, Russia, and many in the Ukrainian government feel that the national heritage of the country is under threat from enemy bombs and missile attacks. The museum is set to ‘preserve the statehood as well as the history’ of the country, according to Alex Bornyakov, Ukraine’s Deputy Minister of Digital Transformation.

Perhaps fittingly for a digital museum, the deputy minister revealed his country’s plans for the forthcoming web-based institution on Twitter. Writing on the social media platform, Bornyakov said that the NFT museum would be called ‘Meta History: Museum of War’. Once it has gone live, the virtual museum will include a timeline of events relating to the conflict between Ukraine and Russia. Each of these events will be given its own NFT. According to the government announcement, each of the NFTs in the museum will be accompanied by a tweet detailing a significant event in the protracted war between the two countries. The tweet will help to contextualise the NFT which will also include an illustration. The government said that various Ukrainian artists were on board with the digital gallery and had been commissioned to create original artworks for it.

According to Bornyakov, one of the tweets and accompanying illustrations that they have made an NFT for related to the third day of the war after Russian tanks rolled over the border into Ukraine. This particular NFT details how the western military alliance, NATO, called on Russia to halt its advance and to pull out of the country. The graphic that has been produced for this NFT was created by an artist known as Alina Kropachova. Her work of art depicts a compass with a bullhorn attached to it.

Fundraising

When Bornyakov made his announcement, only the initial stages of the war had been documented with NFTs but this is set to rise. The first tranche of NFTs was made available for sale from the end of March but, since then, additional digital assets documenting the war have gone on to be sold. The initial valuation for each NFT was about £400. Bornyakov said that all of the income generated from the sales of these NFTs would go directly to the Ministry of Digital Transformation.

According to some observers, the use of a permanent ledger that is in the public domain does more than merely guarantee the provenance of the ministry’s digital assets. The use of a blockchain has a secondary benefit insofar as it helps to combat what many in Ukraine view as the Russian spreading of misinformation and lies about the war. Because blockchain technologies are in the public domain, the Kremlin cannot easily falsify the narrative of the war as it appears in the various tweets and illustrations of the museum.

One commentator said that the NFT museum is focussed on the intention of keeping the memory of real wartime events alive in a way that Russia cannot alter via blockchain manipulation. The idea that it also raises charitable donations to support Ukrainian culture is secondary. Others in the digital asset sphere agreed, claiming that disinformation is being widely weaponised by Russia on a military scale in Ukraine and that the NFT museum represents a way to fight back.

International Events

The Ministry of Digital Transformation is using tweets from respected international governmental bodies to tell the story of the war in Ukraine rather than publishing its own. These official announcements from bodies like the United Nations, for example, are viewed as more verifiable markers of the events of the war they describe. It is also worth noting that other fundraising campaigns using NFTs have been successful in Ukraine. For instance, the UkraineDAO NFT project raised over $5 million recently. This blockchain-backed project was led by Pussy Riot member Nadya Tolokonnikova.

Interested in learning more about Museums and NFTs, read more here.

About the author – Manuel Charr

Manuel Charr is a journalist working in the arts and cultural sectors. With a background in marketing, Manuel is drawn to arts organizations which are prepared to try inventive ways to reach new audiences.

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