Auction house Sotheby’s is going to auction The Fungible Collection by digital artist Murat Pak in collaboration with Nifty Gateway. The auction will start next week from April 12th until the 14th. The collection taps into the concept of ‘our understanding of value’.
The idea is that Pak, as the anonymous artist is best known, will sell a whole bunch of open editions. These artworks have no minting limit, but can only be acquired for a limited time. Over the course of the sale the entire Fungible Collection will reveal itself, adding extra layers to the artwork. Again, this Pak collection as a whole is supposed to be a type of performance art as well.
On April 12th, 13th and 14th the open editions will be for sale ar 1PM ET or 5PM UTC. These are sold for $500 a piece. Based on the amount of open editions someone buys, they will receive another NFT. Buy one open edition, and they buyer will receive “A Cube”, buy five and they get “Five Cubes”. If someone buys one hundred open edition cubes for $50,000, they will also receive an NFT called “Five Hundred Cubes”. So when someone buys 506 open editions, they will receive one of each of the earlier mentioned NFTs.
In addition there are extra artworks. The one hundred people who buy the most cubes, will receive an artwork called Complexity. While the unique artwork ‘The Cube’, will go to the person who bought the most cubes. In addition Pak is giving away an artwork called Equilibrium to people who solves his new puzzle, the biggest influencer, a giveaway winner, and the biggest Pak collector.
Sotheby’s announced their collaboration with Pak a few week ago. Some see the move as a direct answer to Beeple and the auction at Christie’s. However, Sotheby’s and Pak have been flirting well before that infamous Beeple auction. In January the artist sold some NFT art through Nifty Gateway, and in the end the artist gave one artwork to Sotheby’s. Simply because they were bold enough to ask.
What is crypto or NFT art?
Digital art has been around for decades. However, without the existence of blockchain technology it was impossible to verify authenticity and rarity. Now digital art is connected to a token on the blockchain, a non-fungible token or NFT. That way buyers can see how many copies of a certain artwork there are, and whether the product is original. Digital art on the blockchain used to be referred to as crypto art, but NFT art as a name has become increasingly popular.
The concept of seeing a digital image as art, is one thing. However, for many people it will be a challenge to consider digital images valuable. Consider this: The Mona Lisa is worth many millions of dollars. If I would paint the Mona Lisa in an exact copy, it would be worth only 50 dollars. Because we all know where the original version is. Being able to verify the authenticity and rarity of a piece of art is crucial. This applies to NFT art on the blockchain as well.
Some people don’t care about the Mona Lisa. It’s just a painting. They are happy to download an image from Google Images, print it on canvas and hang it in their living room. Others want the real deal. The same rules go up for digital art. Many people will be happy having a digital image they like, screenshotted on their phone. Others will value having an original artwork, minted by the actual creator, verifiable through blockchain technology.