Introducing the proposed ‘ZEN Bikers Guild’…
What is it?
A thematic guild with an initial specific geographic focus.
What is the theme?
The reharmonisation of creativity with technology.
What does this actually mean?..and why is it needed?
Before answering this, I need to provide some context.
The ZBG will initially be a project with specific aims within the ‘Silicon Fen’ geographic area of Cambridge (UK) and its immediate hinterland.
Cambridge is the leading tech hub in the UK, with a world class University. It is a tech and research boom town with property prices to match. The economic success of the city has been fuelled by technology, however there are consequences of displacement for the non-mainstream creative community - (artists, musicians, etc).
Blockchain & Non-Fungible Tokens present an opportunity to empower and elevate creatives under their own impetus and on their own terms. The initial idea of the ZBG is to establish a “Creative Hack Node” in the Cambridge area, linking crypto-familiar creatives, and then onboarding non-crypto creatives to blockchain/NFTs & NEAR.
(The importance of NEAR as a sustainable ‘carbon-neutral’ blockchain cannot be underestimated in this regard.)
Essentially, we will be trying to organise and reconnect creatives with technology, and to then harness it for their own purposes.
The extension of this process will be to then leverage this ‘Creative Hack Node’ as a means to educate & onboard the tech/research community of Cambridge to blockchain & NEAR.
Why Zen Bikers ?
The name of the Guild is an oblique reference to Robert Pirsig’s book Zen & The Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. Pirsig wrote two books outlining his philosophy of “The Metaphysics of Quality”, and while 'Zen’ is the best-selling philosophy book of all time, it is largely ignored by academic philosophy.
Without going in to too much detail, the Metaphysics of Quality is Pirsig’s take on the very nature of existence. What started him on this journey was the idea of trying to understand and repair the disharmony between Aesthetics and Technology as they relate to a motorbike.
It is this same first principle that is at the heart of the ZBG.
Who is the ZBG?
zeitwarp.near - others to follow…
- I will be recruiting two other local [Cambridge+] artists who are familiar with NEAR to act as council members.
- We will establish a Telegram Group, and develop a plan for how to set up ZBG, the ZBG DAO, an initial budget proposal, and manage the initial outreach to other creatives in the area,
- To connect with existing creative and crypto communities within the ‘Silicon Fen’ area, and ‘join up the dots’ between them while promoting NEAR.
- To fund creative initiatives and events combining blockchain/NEAR education & onboarding
- To secure space for a combined studio/gallery/education/onboarding experience…either on a permanent or pop-up itinerant basis.
- There are no plans for any kind of social token.
This is a long-term plan and perhaps a test-case for other cities with similar tensions between technology-led gentrification and creative displacement, and we aim to build slowly but purposefully, and with solid foundations. Nonetheless, if specific opportunities such as the forthcoming MetaBUIDL “Hack Node” imitative are on the immediate horizon, then we may bring a short term focus to a specific initiative.
zeitwarp - telegram [preferred]
@zeitwarp - Near Governance Forum
zeitwarp - twitter
zeitwarp - discord