Tribune published in 21Millions (Capital Magazine)
Bitcoin won't happen without culture
By Yohann Grignou and Antoine Breuil, founders of Samouraï Coop and directors of the documentary "The Underground Sistine Chapel".
Published on 21 Millions by Gregory Raymond (21Millions / Capital) - Original French version here.
All the great industrial or technological revolutions have also been cultural revolutions. Culture has always helped to prepare society, its social organizations and its individuals, for new collective imaginations.
Whether it is cinema, music, visual arts or literature, the primary function of the arts is to open up the field of possibilities, to make people dream, think, reflect, or simply to make them meet around common experiences.
In the 20th century, many movements of thought were driven by artists, who carried new values, explored new social norms, and claimed new aspirations.
The blues expressed pain in the face of inequality, the electric guitar screamed a violent desire for freedom for an entire generation, techno expressed the rage of massive industrialization leaving entire cities like Detroit to fend for themselves. The hip-hop movement was born in Brooklyn from a hack: "We don't have instruments, we'll scratch those who do".
In reality, this hack would have had no impact if it had remained confidential in a Brooklyn bedroom. It is important because it generates encounters, ideas, improvements, block parties, and a set of humans building a movement (conscious or not) around common values, and new aspirations.
None of these cultural movements asked permission to be born. Just as Bitcoin and the distributed protocols will not ask for permission to integrate into our societies. Millions of people are making money, and building a new perspective on the future. Bitcoin is not just a protocol.
It is also a radical break with a "centralized" world culture. It's an organic, diverse community that cooperates on a peer-to-peer basis. It is also a new approach to the world, which brings together in a radically open way those who wish to do so, regardless of origin, skin color, or language.
So as young producers, directors, artists, with Samurai Coop we decide to contribute to document this in a sincere way, in coherence with these values. It is time to build another narrative. Then, it is also time to experiment its potential in an operational way and to freely document its adventures. May they inspire others.
We therefore allow anyone who wants to, to participate in the financing of works destined to be delivered to the Internet, to the street, and to the world. If our catalog of productions is considered by the banks as an "asset" (as it is in the traditional cinema circuit) then this asset will be decentralized, and will belong to the public, to an open community.
We will explore during the next years these new territories, and will not pretend to be right, but will do it with seriousness and rigor. We are unknown, young, and determined to produce striking, sincere, human-oriented works. If we, passionate creators, and passionate about distributed protocols, don't do it ourselves, who will? A new intermediary, and we will have lost the essential.
We therefore call on artists, these hackers of reality, to take the (private) keys of a world to be imagined. To build live with their public, and to let their imagination apprehend these new tools freely, in peer to peer.
As for us, we deliver today our first feature film, entitled The Underground Sistine Chapel (1h17) telling the crazy story of Pascal Boyart, a major artist who will mark history.
>> The film is available here
This film is financed through community funding, through pre-sales and sales of NFTs, or donations (BTC and ETH) which allows its free distribution, its accessibility for all.
With its release, this film represents a new chapter for Samurai Coop, a first proof of work. This film comes from the heart. It is also a "ping test", a "hello world", to sound out those who receive us, find themselves in our values, and wish to see our films flourish. We remain very lucid, we are nobody, there is before us a whole continent of Web3 to explore, and to document.
Thank you to those who support us. Stay curious.
A&Y - 07.07.2021