What I am about to say is blasphemy by many in our NFT community. I don’t like Gary Vee. Not that I knew him, but the NFT art I first saw on sales platforms reminded me of something a 6th grader with little artist experience would draw. Ouch. Little did I know those simple drawings weren’t just art, they were doorways. Doorways to a whole new universe.
In March and April I was a speaker at NFTLA, NFT Miami and I was the 3rd speaker approved for this months NFTNYC out of 1,500+. So, I was experiencing conference overload and not interested in attending Veecon.
Then like many, I changed my mind. I saw many of the friends and communities I’ve become part of were going. The Cyberkongz crew and it’s MC “Henry the Grape” said “dude, we are sponsors and you’re coming with us.”
So, I arrived in Minneapolis a day early and checked into the Francis Drake Hotel. At the US Bank Stadium check-in I received a sponsor wristband.
The setting was impressive. It shouts “Hello Web3, we have arrived.”
The opening party on a great lawn across from the stadium was cast into doubt. The skies opened up and hail came pelting down. It wasn’t just wet, it was loud, denting cars and pounding people like rocks. Yet, by the time the opening reception came, the storm passed, and the sky was blinking its baby blue eyes with white cotton puffs like eyebrows of clouds.
I stepped into Gary’s world. It was honestly- beautiful.
Fewocious held a paint party open to everyone, not only his 6,000 Fewoworld holders, but anyone who wanted to paint, smack in the middle of the field. I donned a white disposable jump suit to protect my clothes, grabbed a canvas and brush and started to create. “Fewo” at 19 is already becoming the consummate host. He greeted all, painted on his attendees canvases, and even signed art, shirts, arms, shoes in a display of generosity. Many artists who have already launched like Fewocious might be precious about their spontaneous collaborations with a spray can or paint brush. Fewo gave it away for free.
Lots of vendors lined the street offering free drinks and food samples. Great music pumped out from the concert sized stage, and the sunset cast a pastel peach, orange, and golden hue for hours.
It was the spirit. The spirit moved me. Here was every generation, every type of person, every color, sex, religion, nationality coming together IRL to celebrate.
Not being a Gary Vee Frenz yet, I didn’t have a hunger to say hi, or get a photograph. Hence the law of least effort kicked in. He kept coming over to wherever I was standing, with a large entourage following him like baby ducks following momma duck. People lined up for hours to get a few seconds of time with him and a selfie.
Everyone was friendly, open, inviting. Welcome to a refreshing change from the frequent shilling, scamming, and rug pulling online.
The next two days were a series of amazing talks. Many people go to pitch their projects. Veecon was a celebration with a soft low shill vibe. Day 2 and 3 will follow in this three-part unpacking of Veecon 2022.