Vice Media unveils Metaverse headquarters
Virtue Worldwide, the creative agency powered by VICE, has partnered with Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) to create an office inside the metaverse for VICE Media Group (VMG).
The virtual building will be open to multiple VMG businesses including Virtue and VICE and act as a permanent residence for the group in Decentraland. The initiative was created by Virtue Futures – a dedicated innovation division within Virtue that helps brands to innovate in new platforms, technologies and spaces in culturally relevant ways.
In mid-2021 the Virtue Futures team launched Coca-Cola’s first NFT marking the first meaningful example of how brands and agencies can use the technology. Built in Decentraland’s open digital world platform, the space will serve as the agency’s virtual innovation lab where teams can experiment with NFTs, DAOs and Web 3.0 directly, applying insights directly for brands eager to make an impact.
Morten Grubak, Global ECD Innovation, Virtue Futures: “The creative opportunities within the metaverse are hugely exciting and as we’re already helping brands navigate this new space it makes sense to have an office there ourselves. Working with world-renowned architects at BIG, the vision has taken on a new reality.”
The Decentraland HQ serves as the central node in Virtue Futures global borderless team setup. Here, clients and collaborators can meet for briefings, presentations and in-situ demonstrations of recent experiments. The space showcases a range of digital experiments, and has plenty of hidden extras for curious explorers — including a direct route for young creatives to reach a selection of highly acclaimed global Meta-Mentors.
It will also serve as a launchpad for digital field research into the sociology of digital communities. The virtual building is designed by Bjarke Ingels Group, the pioneering architectural firm behind The Pyramid in Manhattan and Google’s Mountain View North Campus.
Bjarke Ingels, founder and creative partner, BIG: “What architect doesn’t dream of building something free from the limitations of material cost, building regulations and even the laws of physics? The metaverse is a new space, and we’re all still figuring it out but we believe that as designers we have an obligation to dream big and make it as beautiful and functional as anything in the real world.” Nancy Dubuc, CEO of Vice Media Group: "Vice has always been about being inside culture, going to places where our audiences are. This is a new frontier filled with potential and once again, we’re proud to be pushing the boundaries."
Chris Garbutt, Co-President, Virtue Worldwide: “We’re stretching the capabilities of what brands can do in the metaverse to give audiences new and impactful experiences. We see Virtue Futures as the playground where we can continue to innovate from a front row seat.” Adam De Cata, Head of Partnerships at Decentraland said: “We’re seeing massive interest from players big and small, but for a lot of the more entrenched actors, it’s more about saying you did it than actually involving themselves with our community. So it brings us great joy to see two such iconic organisations — BIG and Virtue — get their hands dirty with such earnest dedication.”
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