Legendary graffiti artist Mr. Kaves generated more than $3 million from his first NFT drop, The Family Mooks.
Michael McLeer, AKA Mr. Kaves, has been working as a graffiti artist, musician, tattooer, and all around creative for nearly three decades. He’s a staple of the New York street art scene and has designed visuals for major brands, including Aston Martin, Jaguar, NIKE, Rockstar Games, and world-renowned artists, the Beastie Boys and Metallica.
And now Mr. Kaves is making his debut into the burgeoning and disruptive world of generative art NFTs.
The project, The Family Mooks, is a cast of characters — part The Sopranos and part The Munsters.
The project was brought to life by Doodle Labs, an NFT-focused company dedicated to bringing established artists and brands to the blockchain. Doodle Labs is powered by the generative minting technology from the cutting edge and wildly successful Art Blocks platform. Doodle Labs allows artists to create collections of one-of-one-of-X NFTs that are immutably stored on the blockchain.
“Doodle Labs is excited to bring the vision of artists and brands to life via algorithmic generative on-chain art,” says Matthew Dweck, Founder of Doodle Labs. “We’re just getting started here.”
“NFTs feel like a key to open up a door to creativity on another level,” Mr. Kaves says. “The digital age is here and it gives artists a new way to create. This is a platform for artists to really flex their skills on multiple levels.”
Coming to life of a pizzeria napkin and featured in an issue of Mass Appeal Magazine two decades ago, Mr. Kaves envisioned The Family Mooks as a TV show. But after it got caught up in red tape, he got frustrated and put the project down. Eliminating that red tape, through direct to fanbase engagement and sales, that’s the power of NFTs and what made Mr. Kaves bring The Family Mooks back to life.
“For artists to have a new platform where they can be in direct contact with the collector is amazing. It’s a way to cut out the gatekeepers,” Mr. Kaves says. “It’s pretty incredible that such a small community, such as the NFT community, has so much power.”
The Family Mooks sold 3,951 unique NFTs — 2,206 were sold via a presale and the other 1,745 were sold via a Dutch Auction in a public drop.
Dweck goes on to say, “When I walked into Mr. Kaves studio and saw his original paintings from 20 years ago of The Family Mooks, I knew we had something very special.”
More drops for The Family Mooks project are forthcoming, but Mr. Kaves says, the main goal is to figure out how to tell a compelling, immersive story.