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From obscure tech phenomenon to the mainstream

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One year on from the sale of the Beeple artwork, Dr Paul Dylan-Ennis of UCD looks at how non-fungible tokens have become a digital extension for collectors and much more.

A version of this article was originally published by The Conversation (CC BY-ND 4.0)

One year ago, an artwork was sold for $69m by the prestigious auction house Christie’s. This was no lost Matisse or rarely seen Van Gogh. Instead, it was a composite collection of digital art by the then relatively unknown artist Beeple.

What makes this piece, Everydays: the First 5000 Days, truly remarkable, is that it was sold as a non-fungible token (NFT). In the year since that sale, NFTs have gone from a relatively obscure tech-world phenomenon to the mainstream.

NFTs are tokens that exist on a secure record-keeping system called a blockchain. These tokens are akin to certificates of ownership a gallery might give to an art collector, but for digital items.

Celebrities such as Eminem and Jimmy Fallon have helped raise the profile of NFTs through the Bored Ape Yacht Club collection….

Read more…

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