Kendall Jenner, J Balvin to Judge NFT Competition for AIDS Charity

Fashion models Kendall Jenner and Kate Moss, musician J Balvin, artist Jeff Koons, and filmmaker Baz Luhrmann are among the celebrities set to serve on a panel that will select winning pieces of digital art to feature in an upcoming NFT collection, which is being organized to benefit The Foundation for AIDS Research (amfAR). 

Creators from around the world have until July 9 to submit original digital backgrounds to the panel via Prospect 100, a digital voting platform designed to showcase the work of under-exposed artists to curators at the top of their fields.

Ultimately, 100 of those backgrounds will be chosen and randomly combined with foreground characters already created by amfAR to form the organization’s first-ever NFT collection. All of the proceeds from the collection’s sale, which is to take place at a later unannounced date, will benefit AIDS-related research.

An example foreground character in amfAR’s debut NFT collection. Courtesy: amfAR

Designs submitted for the project will first be reviewed by a public vote on Prospect 100. Finalists will then be selected for the collection by the project’s celebrity panel, on the basis of originality, meaning, and coherence to the aesthetics of amfAR’s pre-designed foreground characters. 

Participation on the collection’s jury panel marks the first NFT foray for some celebrities, but not for others. Koons, for instance, the highest-grossing living artist in the world, released a debut NFT collection last year. That collection, Moon Phases, consisted of 125 NFTs, each of which is tied to a physical sculpture that will be sent to the moon via an autonomous lunar lander later this year.

Supermodel Moss released a series of short videos as NFTs in early 2021. Jenner and Elvis director Luhrmann, meanwhile, have had no previous public relationships with the novel, blockchain-based medium. 

Additional jurors who will select the project’s winning designs include French designer Alexandre “Millinsky” Daillance (also Project 100 co-founder and CMO), Russian model and philanthropist Natalia Vodianova, South Korean DJ and record producer Peggy Gou, American model Alton Mason, and Italian streetwear designer Francesco Ragazzi.

Prospect 100 previously hosted a benefit competition with the Ukraine government to support the country's efforts amid the Russian invasion, and had designer Daniel Arsham as a judge for that competition. Daillance told Decrypt that the goal with each new competition is to try and raise the stakes with judging panel picks.

“Every Prospect 100 judging panel needs to feel relevant, glamorous and modern,” he said. “Someone like Jeff Koons definitely brings that expertise and relevancy we were looking for, while someone like Kate Moss definitely brings that glamorous aspect that we also value.”

He also highlighted the addition of noted musicians like Balvin and Gou, as well as Luhrmann, who Daillance said he's known for years but hadn't yet worked with. “We are thankful that they have agreed to give us some of their time and likeness to help us raise funds for amfAR's noble mission,” Daillance said of the group.

Decrypt reached out to representatives for Jenner, Moss, Balvin, Koons, and Luhrmann, but did not immediately hear back from any of them.

Additional reporting by Andrew Hayward.

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