Sotheby’s, one of the world’s most prominent auction houses, is on track to sell over $35 million in digital art sales in 2023, setting a record for the firm.
Growing Demand and Interest in NFTs
According to Michael Bouhanna, Sotheby’s Vice President and Head of Digital Art, “2023 is shaping up to be one of the most exciting years for digital art so far.” Bouhanna attributes the growth to increased interest from new and established collectors, as well as higher cryptocurrency prices boosting the value of NFTs.
The auction house executed its first-ever digital live auction this year, with over 300 attendees and total sales surpassing $12 million. An NFT by Dmitry Chernyak titled “Ringers #879” set a new auction record price at $6.2 million.
Sotheby’s has held over 25 dedicated or related digital art auctions in 2022. The firm launched an on-chain NFT marketplace called Sotheby’s Metaverse focused on secondary trading of NFTs.
New Collections and Partnerships
Sotheby’s partnered with artist Vera Molnar and Martin Grasser on the NFT collection “Themes and Variations.” The auction house also sold the manuscript of Neal Stephenson’s novel “Avalanche,” notable for its early use of the term “metaverse.”
Looking ahead, Sotheby’s plans to refine its primary market strategies and continue supporting creators. https://t.co/rabrxntz9Z
Risks of Crypto Investing
While increased NFT trade volume in November reached $1 billion according to Michael Bouhanna, investments in NFTs and other crypto assets are risky, unregulated, and may not be suitable for all investors, particularly in Spain.
Sotheby’s also plans to auction the “Bitcoin Ordinals” NFT collection by Shroomtoshi on December 7. The collection features pixel art referencing Bitcoin’s history and principles.