Krave's Fresh Monkey: Creativity in the Jungle of Financial Freedom


Lindsay Poss

Publishing date

As we all collectively emerge from yet another winter season, there’s an opportunity to reflect on the colder months. For the Stellar Development Foundation (SDF), a highlight was the collaboration with Friends With Benefits (FWB) to host an event at Art Basel centered on blockchain technology and social responsibility. The event successfully raised funds for Casa Tochan, a shelter supporting migrants and refugees in Mexico City. The integration of art, technology, and supporting a cause was an exercise in fusing several elements together to form an experience.

At the heart of this collaboration were the talented artists who put on live performances for attendees. The event featured several different art mediums, including music, photography, and visual art. In that last category, SDF was honored to have Daniel Fila, or Krave, create a graffiti mural live, directly on the wall of the event space. The canvas served as a way for Krave to bring one of his creations, the fresh monkey, to life.

Krave's roots trace back to childhood sketches that paved the way for a multifaceted career spanning mural installations, sculptural reliefs, paintings, and more. His work combines the raw energy of urban culture and street art, sitting at the intersection of creativity and rebellion. The intrigue and urgency associated with graffiti became central themes in Krave's creations.

Fast forward to the present, and Krave stands as a seasoned artist in the Miami community, commissioned by many to transform buildings into masterpieces. As Krave's journey of nearly two decades unfolded, the Fresh Monkey emerged as a symbol of creative liberation.

The quote, "I would rather be hungry in the jungle than fed up in the zoo," encapsulates Krave's philosophy on the intersection of art, money, and freedom. In conversation, he shared the struggles of balancing the pressure to make money with the desire to maintain creative integrity. As an artist, he understands the sacrifice of personal desires in the pursuit of financial obligations.

Krave's work at the Art Basel event encapsulates this struggle visually. The fresh monkey, donned in corporate attire, emerges from a tree, symbolizing the corporate world, yet is lifted by the branches of the tree. Golden, shiny leaves surround the monkey, representing new forms of financial access – a powerful metaphor for breaking free from the constraints of financial pressures.

This narrative aligns with the mission of the SDF, where we are dedicated to providing tools to those who have been excluded from the traditional financial system. In embracing new forms of access, the Stellar network aims to empower individuals, including artists and creators, who approach money with a different perspective, by empowering equitable, accessible, real-world financial services.

Krave's journey mirrors the evolution of an artist grappling with financial pressures while using his creativity to transcend those limitations. As we celebrate the convergence of art and technology, Krave's fresh monkey serves as a poignant reminder that financial freedom can unleash boundless creativity, paving the way for a more inclusive and equitable world.

If this inspired you, tell us about it! Find us at our next event or reach out if you have a collaboration idea.