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PROOF Signal: The Pioneering Digital Art of Herbert W. Franke

In today’s edition:

  • ZENTRUM by Herbert W. Franke curated by Anika Meier and EXPANDED.ART

  • Sign up for allowlist access for community-created “LaunchPad Web3” and “Treeangles”

  • The PROOF Merch Store launches November 20!

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PROOF Updates

Merch Store launches Nov 20 👕

  • The capsule collection for the new merch store kicks off on November 20. 

  • You’ll be able to order basics like hoodies, t-shirts, and hats designed by PROOF Co-Founder Justin Mezzell. Keep your eyes open for the launch!

  • Here is a quick teaser 👀

The Oddities Hearth is closed + more important dates 🗓️

  • The burn window is officially closed for Oddities as of November 15. This means we’ve locked in the maximum collection size for Oddities, and the only way to get a Mythic is with a Mythic Egg.

  • What if you’re one of the few who haven’t hit Diamond Nest yet? Good news - On December 1, we’re unlocking all nesting rewards. You’ll have one month to claim your rewards if you haven’t already. Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Diamond rewards will be unlocked and you’ll have until December 31 to claim everything.

  • 50 Mythic Eggs will continue to activate daily and holders will have until April of 2024 to hatch/reveal their eggs. 

ZENTRUM by Herbert W. Franke: Nov 21 🖼️

  • The collection is 200 pieces and will be dropped through a public Dutch Auction with a rebate. PROOF Collective holders will get an additional 5% discount at the settled price if they bid on a piece. 

  • Learn more about Zentrum from the curator Anika Meier in the guest post below. ⬇️

Community Updates

Command + A November voting round begins Nov 14

LaunchpadWeb3 Coming Soon 

  • Last week we shared information about Gator’s Lunar Society-approved project called LaunchpadWeb3. It is a platform to learn more about projects and general web3 topics.

  • All Moonbirds will get free access. If you’re a PROOF Collector or Mythic holder, you can now enter into a Premintraffle for access on Discord!

Nix.eth’s Genesis art drop: Treeangles

  • Shout out to Nix.eth, who’s releasing his genesis drop called Treeangles. Each piece is a unique portrait of a tree set in a range of environments, generated in a unique genetic algorithmic style he has been developing since 2021. It resides entirely on-chain, ensuring that the art, metadata, and history (through Story Inscriptions) will endure forever.

  • Check out the Premint raffle in discord to learn more about how to get allowlist access.


Anika Meier is a writer and curator specializing in digital art and digital communication and is building EXPANDED.ART. She writes a column for the German art magazine Kunstforum titled STATUS UPDATE about the developments around the topic of NFTs in the field of art. 

PROOF and EXPANDED.ART are delighted to present ZENTRUM in collaboration with the Foundation Herbert W. Franke and curated by Anika Meier. The original code from 1982 exists in Basic as well as a text by Franke; the program still runs on the Apple II.

Aaron Penne, artist and director of engineering at Art Blocks, wrote the code for today's software and hardware in conversation with Susanne Päch, wife of Herbert W. Franke. She supported Franke with feedback when he coded ZENTRUM

ZENTRUM is a dynamic, endlessly running abstract animation made of structural elements and random codes. The random generator ensures that each endless loop is unique. For ZENTRUM, Franke had to make do with the limited computing capacity that a home computer offered at the time. Despite this limitation, it was important to him to develop moving sequences even in his first programs for the Apple II. He considered the movement to be a pioneering digital innovation. The combination of dynamic image sequences and music, as well as the interactivity, were already groundbreaking in his MONDRIAN program code, developed in 1979 for the Texas Instruments home computer.

In a manuscript from 1984, an article for one of the earliest home computer magazines, Franke looks to the future: “Certainly not everything that is created with the help of computer programs has artistic value, but why shouldn't these simple beginnings one day create something that is on a par with the great works of painting.” Franke was clear that such PC programs were the beginning of a far-reaching development for art in the future. He wanted to be actively involved in a development that would open up this potential for art.

Franke used a television at the time because he didn't have an Apple monitor. He didn't know that you couldn't change the contrast of the colors on an Apple monitor. The colors would have been very saturated on the Apple monitor. He himself worked with a television on which he could adjust the contrast. His color world of ZENTRUM is documented using historical video clips and photos. Aaron Penne worked with these recordings, adopted the colors in the adapted code, and simulated the aesthetics of the surface of a CRT monitor.

This Week in PROOF Media

Last week, we had a fun 100 PROOF Live audience show with Tony Herrera, plus a PROOF Digital Art Market Report with Bryan Brinkman. 

This Friday, 100 PROOF Live is back at 10AM PT/1PM ET with Kevin (CEO, PROOF), Derek (Collab+Currency), Amanda (PROOF Culture and Community), and Sam (Director of Research, PROOF). 

Later on in the show, we’re welcoming Anika Meier of EXPANDED.ART to the show as a special guest. She will join Eli (PROOF Head of Art) to talk about the upcoming drop ZENTRUM by Herbert W. Franke.