The Hope Collection: NFTs to empower the survivors of human trafficking

Dropping today, The Hope Collection supports the latest campaign by Hope For The Future, the Austrian charity working to empower those affected by human trafficking.

Three of the world’s leading embroidery artists are auctioning their genesis NFTs to fund training for trafficking survivors. All three artists, Moscow’s Katerina Marchenko, Brasil’s Aline Brant and Finland’s Ninni Luhtasaari are internationally exhibited and have been featured by important titles like Colossal, Vogue and Beautiful Bizarre magazine.

View The Hope Collection here

Their aim is to raise $10k for the Hope For The Future’s ‘Embroidery for Safe Employment’ campaign. Survivors are trained to use an embroidery machine so that they can undertake entry-level work embroidering products. For many, this is their only route out of forced labour after being trafficked across borders.

The Hope Collection DROP TWO: from 13 January 2022
The Hope Collection DROP ONE: from 22nd Dec 2021, with auctions ending on 27th, 28th and 30th of December.

See the available works in The Hope Collection or read on for more.

Hope 3 Katerina Marchenko
‘Hope 3’ by Katerina Marchenko for The Hope Collection

Enabling a new start and a new life

Shockingly slavery still exists in Europe in the form of human trafficking. According to the International Labor Organization (ILO), it is one of the largest crime industries in the world, generating more than $150 billion in illegal profits per year. Two-thirds of that money comes from commercial sexual exploitation.

Hope For The Future is a charitable non-governmental organisation, registered as a charity in Austria. Founded in 2015, they offer support and the opportunity of a new start to trafficking survivors.

Hope For The Future’s label on one of the products embroidered by survivors.

An anchor of hope for trafficking survivors

“Even when one offers survivors the possibility to get out, they are mostly very traumatised by their experiences, they have little knowledge of the local language, and they must first become integrated step-by-step into normal life,” explains founder Andrea Staudenherz, who founded the charity after working with survivors on the streets of Vienna.

“It’s incredible that these renowned embroidery artists, at different sides of the world, can now support our charity’s work via Orica. We see ourselves as an anchor of hope for the survivors of human trafficking. These NFTs are giving us the hope that we could fund five days a week of training in 2022. Our current budget only stretches to four.”

aline brant hope collection
Obra 10 by Aline Brant for The Hope Collection

Hope For The Future is ‘the bigger reason’ for NFTs

For all three embroidery artists, this will be the first time they have auctioned their work digitally. Known as an artist’s ‘genesis NFTs’, these first auctions are increasingly sought after by digital collectors.

“I’d followed this year’s excitement about NFTs, but needed a reason bigger than ‘in it for the money’,” explains Katerina Marchenko, who has more than 400k followers on Instagram.

“When Orica told me about Hope For The Future’s campaign it became that bigger reason for me. I’m excited to auction my artwork for such an important cause.”

Every NFT sold from The Hope Collection will help give those affected by sexual exploitation a new start.

ninni luhtasaari hope collection nft
‘Hold me tight’ by Ninni Lutasaari for The Hope Collection

Discover three renowned embroidery artists

Katerina Marchenko, Aline Brant, Ninni Luhtasaari (Ninni’s image by Laura Happo)

Katerina Marchenko

Katerina Marchenko is one of the most respected embroidery artists working today. Her work has been profiled by art-world heavy-weights like My Modern Met and Colossal. It has also attracted an international audience via the likes of Bored Panda, Vogue and Elle Decoration. Katerina’s exquisite technique and instantly recognisable style mean that she currently shares her studio process with more than 400 thousand followers on Instagram.

Aline Brant

Aline Brant lives and works in Rio de Janeiro, Brasil. She uses photography as her fundamental tool, and makes analogical interventions into the photography, with, among other techniques, free-hand embroidery. Her work has been featured by Colossal, Bored Panda and Beautiful Bizarre magazine.

One of Brant’s intentions is to honor Clarissa Pinkola Estés, the American writer, Jungian psychoanalyst and author of Women Who Run with the Wolves. Brant seeks to create through her art the visual parallel to Pinkola Estés’s literary work.

Ninni Luhtasaari 

Ninni Luhtasaari works with hand-embroidered contemporary textile art and ceramic fountain sculptures. The Tampere-based artist has exhibited in multiple solo and group shows in Finland, Berlin and Munich. Her works are in private collections around the world and in the collections of the Finnish museum of modern art Kiasma, Tampere Art Museum and Helsinki Art Museum (HAM). In 2021 Luhtasaari finished her first public art commission, a ceramic relief installation in Helsinki. 

“I get my ideas from corporeality, illogicality, absurdity and digging through my subconsciousness,” says Luhtasaari. “My work is to express instincts, so to speak. I get ideas from anything around me.”

The Hope Collection will drop on 22nd Dec 2022, with auctions ending on 27th, 28th and 30th of December.

View The Hope Collection here

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