Paolo Gambi is an Italian poet poised at the forefront of the NFT poetry movement. Like me, he sees tokenized poems as a Renaissance already taking off. Being Italian perhaps gives him even more credibility in pinpointing the beginning of a renaissance!
An author of over two dozen books, Gambi showcases poetry in many different languages on his Instagram account as well as on @Rinascimentopoetico. Recently he minted a popular collection of Cryptopunk poetry: poets immortalized in the style of Cryptopunks, accompanied by popular quotes.
Without further ado, here’s a brief interview with one of the passionate leaders of the NFT Poetry movement today.
How did you first become interested in poetry? Who are some of your favorite poets/poems?
Poetry saved my life in the darkest moment of my journey. Poetry became interested in me, I just accepted its light. I consider the founders of poetry Homer, Dante and Shakespeare. I also love Rumi, Borges, Wislawa Szymborska, Hoelderlin, Goethe, Baudelaire was the best for the dark side, but also Bukowski. I also love Italian poets like Pascoli and D'Annunzio. But Walt Whitman changed my life when he reached me with his "you may contribute a verse".
When did you first learn of non-fungible tokens, and how did you think to incorporate them with poetry?
I am a nerd. As a boy I founded a micronation like in 1996. I have followed the crypto world since its beginning. But the a-ha moment arrived when I was experimenting with wall poetry, trying to find new spaces for poetry in the post-Gutenberg era. And I asked myself "why didn't I think about it before?"
As a big believer in the NFT Poetry Renaissance, what point in this movement do you think we are right now? What hopes and dreams do you have for tokenized poetry as this new art form evolves?
Well, Poetry Renaissance is the movement I belong to, and its aim is to gather all those people who believe that poetry can save the world. It is an international movement that is blossoming all over the world. The movement at the moment has no connection with NFT, I am the first in Italy doing this and the first in the movement. But I have a project to create a big international NFT project within Poetry Renaissance. We'll see…
I love your cryptopunk poetry collection and I am the proud owner of Walt Whitman. How did you come up with the idea for cryptopunk poets and what poets can we hope to see minted in the future?
Thanks! I think poetry should speak the language of the contemporary world. Today Cryptopunks' esthetic is a language that is appreciated by a lot of people. I wondered why nobody already tried to mix it with poetry. I was the first. But not the last for sure. Here is the list of all the 50 poets of the first project.
After them I'll mint all the Nobel laureates. Much work to do...
Do you have any advice for all the inspiring NFT Poets out there, both in terms of how to further the movement and how to mint their own collections?
About Poetry Renaissance I always say: a poet alone can write a verse, but to write a poem we need to stay together. So join the movement let us make things together! And this is much truer regarding NFT poetry,..
Thanks very much to Paolo Gambi for joining me for this interview! You can follow him on Instagram here and here, and check out his amazing NFTs on Opensea.