A digital collage called “Everydays — The First Five Thousand Days” by the artist Beeple sold for almost $70 million by Christie’s in an online auction Thursday.
A JPG file made by a digital artist known as Beeple sold Thursday for almost $70 million by Christie’s auction house. That price set a new record for the increasingly popular market for digital-only art — and makes Beeple’s piece the third most-expensive work sold by a living artist at auction, according to a statement by Christie’s.
The artwork, a digital collage called “Everydays — The First Five Thousand Days,” is what’s known as an NFT, or nonfungible token. NFTs signal ownership and authenticityof digital works of art by recording the sale through blockchain technology.
Blockchains record cryptocurrency transactions; the records can be shared but not duplicated.
The South Carolina graphic designer made “Everydays” by posting a new work of art online every day for 5000 days, a project he began in 2007. He then stitched those images together to complete the piece.
Another work by Beeple, Crossroad, sold for $6.6 million last month on Nifty Gateway, another online marketplace.
The first dynamic NFT in the history of @niftygateway has officially been flipped to its final state. Congrats to @pablorfraile and @museumcryptoart for owning this historic piece and to @beeple for stretching the boundaries of what is possible with NFTs.https://t.co/y6cIf4ABkq pic.twitter.com/fRetYDKJxd
— Nifty Gateway (@niftygateway) January 20, 2021
The sale of a purely digital NFT work is a first for Christie’s, a step that brings further legitimacy to the emerging form of digital originals.
Until last year, Beeple was selling art for as little as $100. But with the sale of “Everyday,” his work may be some of the most valuable in the art world today — that is, until another NFT tops this price.