The recently envisioned bright future for NFT (Non-Fungible Token) art certainly seems to have taken different directions. The boom that erupted in March last year with Everyday Sale: The First 5000 Days by Anonymous Beeple for the staggering sum of $69.3 million (€58.3 million) has come to an abrupt halt, undoubtedly conditioned by the volatility and highly speculative direction of the cryptocurrencies in which expression is made. About the values of NFTs. After an initial slump in sales in early 2022, NFTs saw a further 25% decline in value in the second quarter of 2022, and exchanges posted a net profit of $460 million for nonfungible.com, according to Nonfungible.com. billion in the first quarter. If these figures relate to a heterogeneous market, in which collectibles play an important role, it is also true that art has also been affected by them. In October last year, one of the pictures from the Bored Ape Yacht Club series was sold by Sotheby’s online for more than 2.9 million euros, while today’s bored monkeys exchange, albeit still insane, a few hundred thousand euros.
Beeple itself seems to have spoiled its results, and at Christie’s in June, the latest digital work Pilgrimage saw the seller’s hammer stop at €190,000, short of the top estimate of €235,000. There are also unsold works and among the most recent are four with colored and somewhat repetitive geometries by Dmitry Chernyak proposed by Phillips last July, one of which is on display with an estimate of between £1.3 and £1.5 million. So there are those who feel the backlash and auction houses are starting to diversify their strategy. The first is Christie’s which, building on a collaboration already started some time ago with Artory, a blockchain certification company, is also promoting the use of this technology for the secure recording of physical artwork. An example of this is the decorative arts auction to be held in London on September 21 with pieces from the Parisian exhibition of Benjamin Steinitz with an estimated total value of about 4 million euros. From 18th-century French marble sculptures to Marie Antoinette’s Viennese porcelain service for a lady of the court to Valadier’s opulent red marble cups that belonged to the Baron de Rothschild family, all pieces will benefit from a digital certificate proving characteristics, provenance and characteristics. On the other hand, there are those who have decided to systematically analyze the world of crypto-art, such as Pandolfini, who has just created a new division for NFT and digital art. The first online auction is scheduled to run from September 22 to October 3 and will feature a selection of artists ranging in value from a few thousand euros to 100,000. It will therefore be interesting to understand how the assembly will include the proposals, which range according to a varied panorama between different visual languages and multiple technological styles: from 3D graphics to motion pictures, from modified digital photography to images produced by an algorithm programmed by the artist. The names up for auction include Marcel Van Loyt, Peter Grieck, Morten Laskojean, Al Crego and Zygur. (All rights reserved)