IMAGES OF CHRISTIE LIMITED 2021
As Beeple basked in the aftermath of the $ 69.3 million auction of Daily: the first 5,000 days at Christie’s, he had more in mind than his new riches: he needed a framework.
After all, as the new frontier of NFTs – non-fungible tokens, which are certified works of art or collectibles on a blockchain, a permanent digital ledger – opens, collectors are going to need a place to put them, and ornate gilding the rectangle just won’t cut it. Mike Winkelmann (Beeple’s real name) won’t reveal what this new material might look like, but he hinted that it won’t look like any frame we’ve seen before.
Today, most NFTs are viewed online, as not all artists allow their printing in physical art. “That way the content can mature with the technology. Unlike a physical work of art, it is not limited to a single form, so it can be exhibited differently in decades, ”explains Meghan Doyle, contemporary art specialist at Christie’s. For example, Beeple Everyday is purely digital, which means its owner, crypto-investor Vignesh Sundaresan, can never print it out to hang over his coat (unless of course that coat is in his virtual mansion).
But as more artists enter the digital cloud and the market stabilizes, that will change. “It’s like the beginnings of Amazon, cryptocurrency or even photography,” explains gallery owner Dominique Lévy. “I think [the NFT market] will quickly cleanse itself of the madness and evolve into something more meaningful. He has fabulous creative energy.
These artists will always want their work to live in the real world. John Gerrard, for example, created an NFT of his famous Western flag simulation as well as a video sequence and a still image to accompany it. “Even I would rather have a painting than a JPEG,” says Rachel Rossin, a multimedia artist who was the New Museum’s first virtual reality scholar. “But what makes NFTs interesting is that you can place them anywhere you want: on a big screen or a small screen you can have a dedicated computer for your virtual reality rooms, you can build a screen wall. for that. Experiment – doing what gives you pleasure is the point of collecting anything.
NFTs can be viewed on any screen, from a computer to a TV – or, in the near future, maybe even on your refrigerator – but serious collectors won’t want to see their latest acquisitions when they search. Milk. “We’re seeing more and more screens entering homes, and we’re probably not far from seeing rooms with a screen as a wall,” says Joe Saavedra, founder and CEO of Infinite Objects, which prints and frames NFT, including Beeple. pieces, in specially designed displays. “Digital art can be used in these spaces, but we wanted to elevate it permanently, like you might with an oil painting or other work of art. ”
Frames are on the way, whether as fantastic one-off creations like Maarten Baas’s clocks or in minimalist settings like David Hockney’s iPad designs. Will they replace the faithful paint and canvas? No, but we wouldn’t be surprised if art collectors’ walls started sporting one or two bespoke digital frames. For now, watch this space.
This story appears in the Summer 2021 issue of City Country.
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