Who bought Beeple’s work at Christie’s? by ANDREA CONCAS
The record is set, “Everydays: the first 5000 days” by digital artist Beeple, born Mike Winkelmann, with its sale at $69,346,200 million is destined to become a milestone that puts the focus definitively on Crypto Art.
Now the question we’re all asking is, who bought Beeple’s NFT work?
But before delving into the answer, it’s good to remember the characteristics of a Crypto Art work, namely NFTs, acronym of Not Fungible Tokens, collectible digital files based on Blockchain technology (distributed databases) and becoming in fact a real digital smart contract.
NFTs become, for Crypto Art, the ideal solution, to guarantee the ownership of the work, the uniqueness, the verifiability and exact quantification of the copies put on the market, very important data for the nascent collectors.
In practice, the physicality of the work, like ownership, becomes digital, constantly tracked while, in some cases, artists will continue to get a percentage even on sales after the first one thanks to NFT tracking of the same platforms.
Today, numerous platforms such as SuperRare, Nifty Gateway, OpenSea, and MarkersPlace enable the sale of these digital works on both a first and second market basis, tracking sales and making clear every transaction that takes place on average in Ethereum (ETH).
However, remember that Christie’s auction took place with the traditional methods of the auction house, which although selling a digital NFT work, followed the canonical procedure by accepting bids through their platform and using the major FIAT currencies such as dollars, pounds or euros and NOT cryptomonets.
Christie’s has declared that after the adjudication and balance, it will be the artist Beeple himself to release the work to the collector through the Makersplace platform, completely changing the philosophy and canonical dynamics of sale and exchange of NFTs.
Currently the work does not appear in the collection and availability of the artist, nor is it known how the release will be regulated, including the issuance of the same within the platform.
So if, as we have seen before, one of the peculiarities of NFT is transparency and traceability, the question we are all asking ourselves is who will be the collector to have paid out the astronomical amount of dollars?
Logically, his name, even if under a pseudonym, should appear in clear text on Makersplace or Opensea and the value of the work will be what, that of the auction? The same value will be converted into Ethereum and the work will be available to all as the others and tracked in the eventual future sale? How much and when will this work be resold? Are we in front of a real revolution of collecting, or is it just a speculative bubble?
Has Crypto Art really entered the canonical and institutional world of Art?
Now, will more traditional artists, be more convinced to enter the world of Crypto Art?
Any answer to these questions will lead to a significant change in the two worlds, Crypto and Art, we just have to wait for the situation to evolve….
Photo Credits: COURTESY BEEPLE/NIFTY GATEWAY