A collaborative drawing project created by Alex Alpert and 55 brilliant NFT artists was released recently, raising funds and awareness for Mental Health. The piece of art, titled “Drawn Together,” began as a doodle in the center that artists added to, each imparting their interpretation of mental health through their artwork. It was minted as an NFT, enabling the project to achieve its purpose of raising awareness while giving 100% of profits to a good cause.
“My greatest goal as an artist is to de-stigmatize mental illness and raise awareness around mental health. As someone who has struggled with depression and lost close friends to suicide, my art has always been inspired by expressing how I feel when I can’t communicate it through my words.”
– Alex Alpert
About “Drawn Together”
A drop-in event presented by Obtainable.io, “Drawn Together,” featured 55 artists from around the world – all coming together to promote a message of mental health awareness.
To encourage people to donate to charity using a token-based system, the drop worked in collaboration with Charitas, a platform for the community to reward charitable initiatives. It was also agreed upon that Charitas would match the amount raised from this drop.
Each sale of each artist’s contribution separately, as well as the auction proceeds resulting from the NFT final auction, benefited NAMI, the National Alliance on Mental Illness, an organization that specifically works to advance mental wellness.
“We believe in the community more than anything.” –Obtainable
An initial doodle by Alpert at the center of the page marked the beginning of the artwork. Additionally, the same drawing was sent to the artists globally, who added their take on mental health. Each of the 55 artists’ contributions was minted as NFTs and included in the final collective drawing. Almost USD 30,000 worth of ETH has been raised from the art pieces since they were listed on Friday (06/04/21).
Artists’ Struggles With Mental Health
Covid-19 has been designed to test how we usually deal with grief, according to the American Psychological Association. Besides being quarantined, the disruptions include the loss of family members and friends due to this pandemic.
“Our current era is marked by our systematic inability to cope with what now has become nearly 18 months of a global health and financial crisis, with added chronic stressors that see no end. The “Drawn Together” project has evidenced how the utility of art serves as a conduit for healing. From the hallways of Clubhouse to the communities formed on Twitter Spaces, Telegram, and Discord; they have provided Alpert and fellow artists with a 360 Metaverse. An alternative and simultaneously integrated virtual space that offers people an opportunity to share art, document the experience of living through epic chaos, and forge an NFT project like “Drawn Together,” that not only sheds light as a beacon of hope to normalize that everyone is hurting but moreover, to provide relief and healing modalities through the arts, for those who are most struggling with emotional and occupational distress.”
– Dr. Lemny Perez psychologist, writer, and NFT artist
Many of the artists involved in “Drawn Together” talked about their struggles with mental health in Clubhouse rooms. Those who were passionate about the cause bonded together under the umbrella of camaraderie. Additionally, dozens of artists expressed interest in participating in future iterations of the project.
About Alex Alpert
“As I started bringing my art into the NFT space, the potential for collaboration and philanthropy was immediately clear. On the Clubhouse App, I expressed to other NFT artists that I wanted to pass around a digital canvas where they could add a small drawing, building off of the other art and expressing what mental health meant to them. The project instantly gained traction.”
- Alex Alpert
The New Jersey-born Alpert has always drawn and sung. He studied singing at Syracuse University and spent most of his free time drawing. A modeling agency discovered him after he graduated from school and he moved to Los Angeles. Having worked as a model for several years, he decided to move back to the East Coast where he began to focus seriously on his art once he settled in New York City.
“I’ve been drawing for my whole life. It’s always been an outlet for me as someone who struggles with depression. It’s been a way for me to communicate when I feel that I can’t with my words. I truly believe that NFTs can be used to create a positive impact, and this new market and technology is enabling all of us to elevate the conversation about mental health through our artwork.“
A mental health organization that aims to build better lives for millions of Americans who suffer from mental illness, NAMI is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization. Its vision is a world where people living with mental illness can lead fulfilling, healthy lives in a caring community.
Mental illness is complex, affects individuals and families at all levels. NAMI provides advocacy, education, and support so that individuals and families can build better lives.
“What started as a small group of families gathered around a kitchen table in 1979 has blossomed into the nation’s leading voice on mental health. Today, we are an alliance of more than 600 local Affiliates and 48 State Organizations who work in your community to raise awareness and provide support and education that was not previously available to those in need.” _NAMI