Last month, while strolling through the cave-like glazed circular architecture of the British Museum, I wandered into a gift shop and saw something that made me double-take. Inside the souvenir umbrella and postcard, there was a sign that showed the QR code “Access the NFT store”. Near the Court Checkline, I met Vitrin with a print by a 19th century Japanese artist, Katsushika Hokusai. One had a label indicating that the 1833 woodblock print became a non-fungible token (NFT) version and was purchased in January 2022 by a collector aka pixeldrip.eth for just over $ 4,000. The label read, “Scan to see the latest drops.” Don’t worry about the fact that the majority of visitors are likely to not know what all of these terms mean. Did the digital replicas of Edo period artists at one of the world’s most famous museums stand out as if they were valuable works of art in their own right?
The British Museum’s NFT products were created in collaboration with a Paris-based company called the la Collection, founded by Jean-Sébastien Beaucamps in early 2021. Collection; The company will soon announce a partnership with a US agency. The LaCollection aims to provide more carefully selected services than other NFT marketplaces. “I thought a platform like OpenSea was like an eBay experience,” Beaucamps told me that the NFTs currently on sale include JMW Turner ($ 1,000- $ 9,400) and Piranesi ($ 520- $). 2,100) works are also included. Experience from the museum online. The British Museum, of course, has already created commercial replicas of its works of art. This is the purpose of the gift shop. However, the reliability and rarity aura created by NFTs puts the product in another category. According to a British Museum spokesman, “Each NFT is, in a sense, completely unique and, as a result, very different from things like posters and T-shirts.”
It goes without saying that Hokusai has never made digital art. J. died in 1778 to commemorate ancient Rome with a famous etching. Neither was MW Turner or Giovanni Battista Piranage. Collect among the wealth of cryptocurrencies Nouveau. Last year, Andy Warhol’s first digital art piece became an NFT and was auctioned at Christie’s. In January, the Picasso NFT project created a feud between the artist’s descendants and his fortune. These new products have the potential to generate new sources of income, or at least attract new attention. The British Museum’s NFT was launched when the number of people physically accessible to the museum was low due to a pandemic. “They have found that NFTs are the perfect marketing tool to reach these communities that they haven’t reached before,” Beaucamps said, and the NFT scene is “much younger” and “a little male.” He added that it is more international than a museum. Normal audience. The museum receives a commission for each NFT sale and a percentage of the secondary market commission. The British Museum refused to comment on the income it has generated so far, but plans for a new version of the slate later this year.
Creating new works by the late artist is usually taboo in the art world. Prints made after death sell cheaper than those personally directed by the artist throughout his life. The British Museum has created various levels of “rare” to “ultra-rare” NFT editions, but such labels have nothing to do with the format or supply of the original artwork. In somewhat contrast, a project by American painter Lee Mullican’s real estate attempts to use NFTs as a way to package digital native art. Last year, Estate Director Cole Root decided to sell NFTs for digital works created by Marikan in computer software in the 1980s, but did not print satisfactorily for life. “It’s easy to imagine getting a kick from his work across a networked screen,” said Malikan’s Root. Root has partnered with an NFT company called Verisart that has worked with artists such as Roe Ethridge, Quayola and Rob Pruitt. Release of the late painter’s ambiguous digital work as a blockchain artifact has certain logic that is lacking in some of the other posthumous efforts. The Malikan NFT costs about $ 1 ether, or $ 2,000, and comes with a contract of ownership, a certificate of authenticity, and the original source file for the work (although technology connects such materials. We cannot guarantee that it will remain) (with NFT artwork if resold). Root told me that he sees the Marikan NFT as a “frame or crate that holds the art” rather than as a iteration of the work of art itself.
Julian Thunder, the great-grandson of German photographer August Thunder, takes things even harder. “I disagree with the idea that NFTs themselves are valuable,” he said. “It’s virtually worthless. It’s literally just a bookmark of information.” Nevertheless, in February of this year, Julian handed out 10,000 NFTs of contact prints of his ancestors’ work, a digital gathering. We have started the equivalent of an experimental archive. Born in 1876 and died in 1964, August Sander is best known for his vast typographic series of portraitures, “People of the 20th Century.” NFTs are physical print images created and annotated by the Thunder family for generations to organize the artist’s negative works. Julian runs Galerie Julian Sander in Cologne, showing photos, but he’s also a programmer since he was young, building inventory management software for art collections. He noticed the NFT boom in 2020 and began working with a photography NFT organization called Fellowship. This technology “provides an opportunity to merge information from different sources into a permanent, openly available location, like Wikipedia,” Thunder told me. “My goal was to put the history of August Sander’s work, which my family had studied for four generations, in a place accessible to everyone.”