There is no Sistine Chapel in Metaverse, at least for the time being. The news, reported by some specialized media in recent days, that the Vatican City was to launch its own art gallery in an irreplaceable token with the works of the Vatican Museums inside, turned out to be false. The refusal came from the Humanity 2.0 Foundation, the NGO that allegedly oversaw the agreement on behalf of the Holy See to bring Vatican art into the metaverse with the Swiss company Sensorium.
No permission, no agreement
“A public-private partnership aimed at expanding the availability of the Vatican’s cultural heritage, from manuscripts to artworks to academic initiatives, to those who would otherwise not be able to benefit from it,” the original Sensorium press release read. Inside, there’s a fairly generic quote from Father Philip Larry, Dean of Philosophy at Pontifical Lateran University and President of Humanity 2.0: “We can’t wait to work with Sensorium to democratize art and make it available worldwide regardless of its socio-economic or geographical boundaries” . What was missing was a clarification: Neither Larry nor Humanity 2.0 were allowed to represent or speak on behalf of the Holy See. And as the NGO memo outlines today, there was not even a foundation’s approach to the Vatican to promote virtual art or NFT with reference to its artistic heritage. Indeed, in the days following the publication of the news, Vatican sources said that they were not aware of any project.
Russian Prokhorov Company
Speaking on a more emphatic tone was Sensorium, a Switzerland-based company founded by Russian oligarch (but not subject to Western sanctions) Mikhail Prokhorov, best known for being the owner of the Brooklyn Nets of the American NBA from 2009 to 2019, without much success. He spoke to the US media about the upcoming agreement regarding NFT and Humanitarian 2.0 as an organization attributed to the Vatican. But that was not the case, and today the founding of Father Larry determines that there is not even a seat in the Holy See (but in Malta and the United States), as well as being a secular and non-religious body. Therefore, Sensorium will at least immediately dispense with the Vatican due to its metaverse, whose token (called Senso) has registered a 12.97% drop in the past 24 hours. (All rights reserved)
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