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NFTs Promised to Revolutionize the Art World—but Are Galleries on Board?

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This has enabled NFT artists to succeed outside the gallery structure. Take Beeple, for example, whose infamous Everydays: The First 5000 Days (2021), a digital collage, sold as an NFT at Christie’s for $69.3 million in March 2021. This month, he opened and sold out his first gallery show (reportedly the first gallery opening he has ever attended) at Jack Hanley Gallery. With a year of NFTs behind us, how have galleries responded to this surge in interest for blockchain-certified work?

Artsy recently surveyed its gallery partners about their experience with cryptocurrency and NFTs, and found that just over a tenth of the 873 respondents said that they had sold NFTs in the last year. Artsy’s survey also suggests that the value of most NFTs sold in galleries may be more modest than the headlines suggest: Of those that sold NFTs, only 5% of galleries said the works’ prices totaled over $250,000. The majority (51%) of galleries sold less than $5,000 worth of NFTs.

Among galleries I spoke to on the topic, there was a broad agreement: There are traditional art collectors, and then…

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