On 4 and 5 June 2021 Te Whanganui-a-Tara Wellington will host the 12th edition of the international MoneyLab conference series in collaboration with the Institute of Network Cultures (Amsterdam, NL) and the MoneyLab community.

MoneyLab is an international multi-disciplinary network of artists, designers, programmers, researchers and journalists. It considers itself a critical platform for imaginative projects that build a more democratic economy, especially within the creative industry. An economy where not only ‘the big boys’ get the money, but where there are opportunities for everyone to participate. It looks far beyond the boundaries of current financial institutions and maps out new opportunities for the distribution of creative content, intellectual property and digital business models, together with and for the creative sector.

The upcoming Wellington edition (first in Aotearoa New Zealand and only the second in the wider Southern Hemisphere after the 2020 Canberra/Hobart event) will bring together groups and individuals from the arts, activism, education and startup/tech sectors with a particular focus on Blockchain and distributed ledger technologies, as applied to community organising and mediated forms of autonomous/participatory governance and decision making tools.

The conference is loosely based around three main topics, including an update on the recent Non-Fungible Token (NFT) debates with NZ-specific perspectives on tax/law and electricity consumption in relation to ‘making’ NFTs; current as well as historic overviews of practice surrounding Social Tokens, community currencies and cultures of sharing in Aotearoa and beyond; and a Māori/Indigenous lens on various technosocial constructs stemming from Blockchain cultures, such as the post-COVID future imaginations of Self-Sovereign Identity protocols.

Accompanying the conference is an exhibition of crypto art and adjacent genre-bending work in both virtual and physical space, in collaboration with p0.nz/i gallery.

The show’s opening on the evening of 4 June will include presentations, performances and interventions by local and international artists and guests.