Christie’s gets Digital

The art market’s latest craze is for Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) and this month Christie’s will be the first major auction house to offer a digital work in this format.

NFTs essentially stamp the art on the blockchain and — for works made virtually — are proving appealing. A permanent record of creation and ownership helps get over potential problems of unlimited duplication, so a tradeable secondary market becomes possible.

Christie’s will auction an NFT-based work by Beeple, one of the best-known digital artists, whose pseudonym was taken from a 1980s soft toy brand. His work, “Everydays — The First 5000 Days” (2021) combines 5,000 images that Beeple has made every day since May 1, 2007, and was officially minted this week. The work comes to auction online between February 25 and March 11, wisely with an “unknown” estimated value. Bidding will start at just $100, a level that seems to reflect the embryonic nature of the market while leaving plenty of room for bubble-like upside.

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