NFTs: you've heard the acronym, now see them in person. In partnership with digital art platform Blackdove, Superchief in New York City has opened the world's first physical NFT gallery space. And there's not a Beeple to be seen.
The fully carbon negative space showcases digital artworks IRL by using high resolution screens. They're aiming for "an empowering, inclusive and pro-artist experience." Some of the artists to exhibit their works include 1010, Ondrej Zunka and Ellen Sheidlin. Then there are some names you might know from elsewhere: Princess Nokia, Hood by Air and even our fave Lourdes Leon.
For those who have just been nodding and smiling these past few months (we can't blame you), NFTs (non-fungible tokens) are a potentially revolutionary if somewhat controversial new method of art ownership. Using the Ethereum blockchain, they are most commonly used to sell artworks, memes or (most frequently) artworks that strongly resemble memes.
Crucially, every NFT is unique. The token system allows buyers proof of ownership for digital files that would otherwise seem to simply exist in the mysterious online ether. Think of the NFT version of a digital artwork as the original, signed copy of an artist's physical painting or sketch. Obviously, it's pretty easy to screenshot and save your own digital image. But NFTs allow collectors to accrue the certified versions, often for wild sums of money.
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Things are going well for Superchief's NFT project so far. Last night the gallery's first NFT auction, from its inaugural "Starter Pack" exhibition, closed at $11,500 for digital artist Swoon's "Genesis" NFT. She's already had three commission requests for further NFT works.
Superchief's NFT gallery is open daily, from 10AM to 6PM. See some of the "Starter Pack" artworks below... right click and save all you want, but the NFTs are the "real" thing. Start bidding right here.
Photography: Phil Buehler courtesy of Superchief