What Is The World’s Most Expensive NFT?
What Is The World’s Most Expensive NFT?

NFTs, or Non-Fungible Tokens, are growing increasingly popular, as investors and collectors look to get involved in the latest blockchain craze — and some of the prices being paid for these pieces is insane.

An NFT is a unique digital token, akin to a certificate of authenticity, which confirms ownership of the "real" or "original" digital artwork. The most expensive digital artwork in the world is EVERYDAYS: THE FIRST 5000 DAYS by digital artist Beeple (aka Mike Winkelmann). Check the inside information of the most expensive NFT below:

What is "Everydays: The First 5000 Days"?

“Everydays — The First 5000 Days” is a JPG file that contains a collage of images that was created by Beeple, so while most art sales are for one single painting, this contains practically everything that the artist has created since he first began posting his work online in 2007.

Beeple is known for creating surreal pieces of art that reflect the culture of the time, whether that be politics, culture, music, and everything in between.

This is also not the first time that Beeple has made a killing from an NFT sale. Back in February, his piece "Crossroads" sold for $6.6 million in Ethereum. It's clear that people love Beeple's work and see that it has more value than one might think at first glance.

In another first for Christie's, "Everydays" was the first NFT sold by the auction house and was also the first piece to be purchased using Ethereum.

Just yesterday, the NFT called "Crypto Punk 7804" was sold 4,200 ETH, which is the equivalent of $7,566,173.88, thought to be the largest transaction involving NFTs up to that point.

If that sale and today's auction of "Everydays" is any indication, it's the world of NFTs and digital art will constantly be in flux, and this sale might not be top dog for long.

What is the price of "Everydays: The First 5000 Days"?

Photo: phunuonline
Photo: phunuonline

On March 11, 2021, Scott Reyburn reported in The New York TimesOffsite Link that the NFT of Beeple's "Everydays—The First 5000 Days" sold for $69.3 million at Christie's online. "Everydays—The First 5000 Days" is a .jpg collage of all the images that the digital artist Mike Winkelmann,Offsite Link who goes by the name of Beeples, posted online each day since 2007. The price realized placed the value of this digital art in the same realm or higher than the physical art of old masters such as J.M.W. Turner, Georges Seurat, and Francisco Goya, whose reputation has been established for centuries.

"Rebecca Riegelhaupt, a Christie’s spokeswoman, said 33 active bidders had contested the work, adding that the result was the third-highest auction price achieved for a living artist, after Jeff Koons and David Hockney."

"Beeple’s collaged JPG was made, or “minted,” in February as a “nonfungible token,” or NFT. A secure network of computer systems that records the sale on a digital ledger, known as a blockchainOffsite Link, gives buyers proof of authenticity and ownership. Most pay with the Ethereum cryptocurrency. “Everydays” was the first purely digital NFT sold by Christie’s, and it offered to accept payment in Ethereum, another first for the 255-year-old auction house."

In an article announcing online auction of the digital collage in The New York Times on February 24, 2021 Josie Thaddeus-Johns wrote:

"For a long time, Beeple felt dismissed by the art world. He is taking great pleasure at this crypto-fueled reversal. These works, most of which he offhandedly describes as “crap,” are suddenly being anointed by one of the art world’s most venerated auction houses. “The traditional art world is like: ‘Who’s this kid,’ but I also have 1.8 million followers on Instagram,” he said. “The Christie’s thing brings a level of validation for this.”

"The fine art world is “finally starting to recognize digital artists as real art,” he added."

Paying "Everydays: The First 5000 Days" with cryptocurrency

When Christie’s announced the sale last month, it made waves when it revealed that it would accept cryptocurrency as payment; the caveat was that the buyer’s premium had to be in a traditional currency.

But as the days went on and people continued to push the price even higher, that policy changed.

“We are accepting [a buyer’s premium of] Ethereum for this purchase,” Davis says. “I feel like that’s actually the biggest deal of this whole thing, secretly.”

Speaking a day before the sale closed, Davis said he was “90 percent sure” that the final buyer would be paying in cryptocurrency. Christie’s did not immediately confirm if that was the case once the sale concluded.

Given the wild volatility of cryptocurrencies, Christie’s maybe taking a risk accepting its premium inv ether, the currency of Ethereum apps. The second-biggest digital coin lost 50 percent of its value on February 22, sinking as low as $US700. As of 10.11 am EST on March 11, ether was trading at $US1815 to the dollar, a roughly 160 percent growth over the prior week.

"Everydays: The First 5000 Days" Details

Beeple (b. 1981)

EVERYDAYS: THE FIRST 5000 DAYS

token ID: 40913

wallet address: 0xc6b0562605D35eE710138402B878ffe6F2E23807

smart contract address: 0x2a46f2ffd99e19a89476e2f62270e0a35bbf0756

non-fungible token (jpg)

21,069 x 21,069 pixels (319,168,313 bytes)

Minted on 16 February 2021. This work is unique.

What decides the price of "Everydays: The First 5000 Days"?

This sale is the latest in a whirlwind boom in the market for NFTs. Beeple’s previous record was set late last month when a work that someone had bought just months earlier in October for $US66,000 sold for $US6.6 million – a 9900 percent growth. Before that, his record stood at $US777,777.777, which was set in January. A year before that, he hadn’t sold a single artwork.

Alex Rotter, Christie’s chairman of 20th and 21st-century art, said: “We let the market decide what it’s worth, we didn’t push anyone to bid $US60.25 million. People want Beeple, and the market decided.

“Sixty-nine million dollars in the context of the traditional art market would be the top piece in most auctions – the top artwork in any sale.”

Digital artworks by Beeple, aka Mike Winkelmann, an American graphic designer. “We are in a very unknown territory,” says Noah Davis, a specialist in post-war and contemporary art at Christie’s.

Who is the author of "Everydays: The First 5000 Days"?

Photo: art-culture.world
Photo: art-culture.world

Beeple is an artist. He makes digital art—pixels on screens depicting bizarre, hilarious, disturbing, and sometimes grotesque images. He smashes together pop culture, technology, and postapocalyptic terror into blistering commentaries on the way we live. A recent frame depicted Donald Trump wearing a leather mask and stripper’s pasties, taking a whip to the coronavirus bug (title: “Trump Dominating Covid”). On the day Jeff Bezos announced he was kicking himself upstairs, Beeple imagined the Amazon founder as a massive, threatening octopus emerging from the ocean as military helicopters circled above (“Release the Bezos”).

Beeple’s artwork is so high-tier and highly respected within the community, and this piece is essentially a collage of 5000 pieces of his work. Starting from 2007, he pledged to create one piece of art every day, and this is the result. Needless to say, it was worth the effort.

Beeple has 1.8 million Instagram followers. His work has been shown at two Super Bowl halftime shows and at least one Justin Bieber concert, but he has no gallery representation or foothold in the traditional art world.

And yet in December, the first extensive auction of his art grossed $3.5 million in a single weekend.

When did he come into the limelight?

Even before Beeple entered the mainstream art circuit, he did freelance projects for companies that work on live events such as MTV VMAs and the Super Bowl. He has created concert visuals for performing artists such as Ariana Grande, Justin Bieber, Childish Gambino, Nicki Minaj, and Shakira. His clients include Elon Musk’s SpaceX and Apple.

While his short films have been screened at Miami Art Basel, Prix Ars Electronica, Sydney Biennale, and Ann Arbor Film Festival, his designs have featured on Louis Vuitton Spring/Summer 2019 apparel collection in Paris Fashion Week October 2018. More recently, his NFTs were included in the game Louis: The game.

What's an NFT?

NFTs allow you to buy and sell ownership of unique digital items and keep track of who owns them using the blockchain. NFT stands for “non-fungible token,” and it can technically contain anything digital, including drawings, animated GIFs, songs, or items in video games. An NFT can either be one-of-a-kind, like a real-life painting, or one copy of many, like trading cards, but the blockchain keeps track of who has ownership of the file.

NFTs have been making headlines lately, some selling for millions of dollars, with high-profile memes like Nyan Cat and the “deal with it” sunglasses being put up for auction. There’s also a lot of discussion about the massive electricity use and environmental impacts of NFTs. If you (understandably) still have questions, you can read through our NFT FAQ.

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