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Thirteen-year-old digital artist Nyla Hayes is already shifting the culture as TIME Magazine’s first-ever artist-in-residence who created Cadillac-commissioned NFTs to support the Save The Music foundation as part of the innovative auto giant’s Black Future campaign.

The NFTs, created in Hayes’ renowned “Long Neckie” style, represent Cadillac’s first entry into the Web3 space, which includes token-based marketplaces.

Cadillac commissioned two NFTs for the auction: Adira, the Gold Edition Long Neckie–an exclusive one-of-one NFT and Adira–the Silver 120 Anniversary Edition available to multiple purchasers.

The Gold Edition NFT sold for 1.888 ETH, equivalent to more than $3,500 at time of auction. The Silver edition NFT, which commemorates Cadillac’s 120th anniversary, sold at .2 ETH with 75 purchasers, totaling approximately $20,000.

“Adira represents a Black Woman superhero,” said Hayes. “She aligns with the Cadillac brand through her bold, confident, powerful, luxurious and electrifying stance.”

Proceeds from the sales of the Black Future Long Neckie NFTs combined with a $55,000 contribution from Cadillac will be donated to the Save The Music Foundation’s J. Dilla Music Tech grant program.

This program teaches students electronic music creation, audio engineering, recording, and production skills that will help prepare them for sound engineering roles within the auto industry.

“As the champion of big dreams and bold ambitions, Cadillac encourages students to pursue their passions,” said Juanita Slappy, multicultural marketing lead at Cadillac.

We are thrilled to support the Save the Music Foundation and their efforts to get students excited for careers in music tech. Sound engineering is an important and growing field in the automotive industry, and we’ve seen how engaging this program is in sparking interest in this type of art as a career.”

Grants from the Save the Music Foundation have helped more than 2,000 schools across the nation start and maintain their music programs.

“As one of the first nonprofits to experiment with this innovative fundraising tactic, this collaboration marked a turning point of the organization’s approach to not only fundraising, but music education at large,” said Danielle Zalaznick, Chief Development Officer of Save The Music Foundation. “This is just an early preview of an array of new and innovative projects to come.”

The J. Dilla Music Tech program launched in Detroit with support from Cadillac in 2019 and will use the $55,000 contribution to expand the program to an additional Detroit High School in 2023.

Once launched, each J. Dilla Music Tech grant provides programming for 10 years, impacting hundreds of students through each investment.

Cadillac’s Black Future campaign (awarded Best Content Marketing by Online Media Marketing & Advertising (OMMA) not only highlights rising artist NFTs but displays Black artistry through compelling visuals and captivating music while featuring the 2023 Escalade-V–the industry’s most powerful full-size SUV.


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