Experimenting with the autonomous potential of blockchain as a medium, Project Mahin is an ongoing performance that pairs dynamic art with the undiscriminating and distressing nature of breast cancer diagnoses.
The Project started on March 21st 2021 to raise awareness and funds for breast cancer research. Set to last for 10 years, it was created to honour my mother, Mahin, and her own diagnosis, which occurred in late 2019.
Launched on the significant date of Mahin’s birthday, it started with 60 illustrations of beautifully unique and diverse breasts. Through time, each illustration is subjected to a 13% chance of developing invasive breast cancer; 1 in 8 will be diagnosed and will change, permanently transforming into a new, post-cancer and post-surgery pair of breasts.
These statistics, which reflect the real odds that individuals with breasts face today, are made staggeringly palpable through this performance. The viewers and owners of these works are able to witness the changes visually and experience the arbitrary character of breast cancer diagnoses through the technology this performance uses.
Completely autonomous, the mechanism ensures the development and discovery of breast cancer in the illustrations is randomised, existing independently and able to go on without any external involvement.
The illustrations are sold as NFTs, a method that lends itself particularly well to the dynamism of the performance, and the profits go to charities that are committed to furthering breast cancer research. Indeed, 75% of the initial sale of the first 60 illustrations was donated to Breast Cancer Now, with the remaining 25% being used for covering costs.
When secondary sales occur, 5% of the resulting market royalties are also devoted to charity organisations. If the piece is diagnosed, this percentage increases, with 15% of the sale profits going directly to Breast Cancer Now.