Beeple is the 3rd Most Valuable Living Artist by Selling his NFT for a Whopping $69 Million
This is just the beginning. Meanwhile, Barry Silbert of DCG has offered to build a gallery for the unknown buyer of the artwork to display for everybody to see and enjoy.
The first NFT (non-fungible token) to be sold at an auction house, Christie’s fetched an eye-popping $69.3 million.
The digital artwork was ‘Everdays: The First 5,000 Days’ by Beeple, who became the third most valuable living artist after a sculpture by Jeff Koons and a painting by David Hockney. But those two top artworks were sold by collectors, and the artists didn’t get a cent.
The NFT was sold for $60.25 million, without the buyers’ premium, which also broke the record of an NFT piece.
And if you are trying to understand why such a hefty price, “Art has never been rational. Never will be.”
— beeple (@beeple) March 11, 2021
While initially, the mainstream media reported Tron cryptocurrency founder Justin Sun to be the owner of it with his $60.25 million bid, later he took to Twitter to clarify that he was actually outbid by a mere 0.3% of the total price at the last minute.
Reportedly, his bid was costing him $69 million in fees. As the auction house announced last month, Christie’s accepted cryptocurrency Ether for the sales of the NFT for the first time. While the buyer’s premium had to be paid in fiat currency, it was changed later to Ether as well.
Also, Sun said updated his bid to $70 million but wasn’t accepted by the system despite there being 20 seconds left.
“To avoid these types of disputes in the future, ALL bids should be transparent & utilizing blockchain technology would satisfy this requirement,” said Sun and offered his assistance to incorporate blockchain technology into Christie’s system.
The artwork made by artist Mike Winkelmann, who goes by the name Beeple has been in the works since 2013. A mosaic of every image the artist had for the last 8 years is attached to an NFT, basically a digital certificate of authenticity.
Barry Silbert, founder, and CEO of Digital Currency Group (DCG) offered to build a gallery in Decentraland for the unknown buyer to display their new piece of art for everybody to see and enjoy. “You can even create fractional interests in the NFT via NIFTEX to sell to the crowd,” he said.
The bidding for the artwork started at $100 on Feb. 25, which was pushed to $1 million by about 20 bidders.
“The first day of bidding was one of the most magical events in my auction career,” says Noah Davis, a specialist at Christie’s who organized the sale. “I’ve never seen anything like it.”
According to the oldest auction house, the final minutes of the sales were closest to the bidding for a work by Leonardo Da Vinci; the last minute extended bidding, which pushed its price to $450 million in 2017.
But this is just the beginning, as per Davis, who said, “I think we will have really compelling and exciting NFT-based art opportunities at Christie’s in the near future.”