In terms of market capitalization and infrastructural development, 2021 was a landmark year for cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology.
The development of non-fungible tokens has piqued the interest of the cryptocurrency community and the general public (NFT). Certain of the most costly NFT artworks have some characteristics with physical artworks in terms of originality and appearance. The fundamental distinction is that, as NFTs, they are merely a code — digital art that exists only on the internet.
Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) have become the “it” thing, thanks largely to the Beeple artwork, which sold for USD 69.3 million in 2021. In reality, some of the most costly NFT artworks are from Beeple or Larva Labs, an early arrival in this sector. Some are futuristic in nature and push the artists to new heights. For example, Mad Dog Jones’ REPLICATOR, whose true name is Michah Dowbak, creates a new NFT every 28 days.
It’s a “NFT experience containing seven distinct generations of artworks,” according to the auction house Phillips, which is selling it. Mad Dog Jones is the most expensive living Canadian artist, with his work selling for USD 4.1 million in April 2021.
However, the prices of NFT artwork sales have risen, indicating that the market for costly NFT art has just recently begun to develop, with much more to come in the years ahead.
Now take a look at some of the most costly NFTs sold so far.
The Merge is a one-of-a-kind digital artwork in the domain of NFTs since it is fractured art rather than a single piece of work.
The Merge, created by famous artist Pak, was auctioned on NFT marketplace Nifty Gateway between December 2 and 4, 2021. It sold for a record-breaking USD 91.8 million, making it the most expensive NFT yet sold as an artwork.
The Merge is owned by 28,983 collectors rather than a single owner. This is due to the fact that the artwork was sold in mass numbers. As a result, by the end of the sale on December 4, collectors had purchased a total of 266,445 masses. When the sale first started, each mass priced USD 575. Every six hours, the price of the tokens increased by USD 25.
Everydays – The First 5000 Days
When renowned digital artist Mike Winklemann, popularly known as Beeple, sold his single piece artwork named Everydays – The First 5000 Days for USD 69.3 million at a Christie’s auction on March 11, 2021, he set a new record. As a result, it’s the most expensive NFT sale for a Beeple art ever.
Beeple created a collage of 5,000 separate photographs one every day from 2007 to 2020, which he did one per day for more than thirteen years.
It was the first time a major auction house offered a completely digital NFT-based artwork. Beeple is now one of the “top three most valuable living designers,” according to Christie’s, following the auction. In an interview with The New York Times, its buyer, MetaKovan, who was subsequently discovered to be crypto investor Vignesh Sundaresan, described it as “a deal.”
Many consider Everydays – The First 5000 Days, the most expensive single-piece NFT artwork, to be the sale that kicked off the NFT boom that will last until 2021. With partnerships with Nike and Katy Perry, also elevated Beeple and his work into an even higher category.
Beeple’s most profitable NFT artwork auction occurred on November 9, 2021. The American artist’s work, Human One, was sold for USD 28.9 million at a Christie’s auction. Ryan Zurrer, a venture capitalist and Swiss entrepreneur, was the bidder. Everydays and Human One are notably different: The First 5,000 Days is a hybrid digital and physical artwork, although The First 5,000 Days does not exist. Beeple built a seven-foot-tall future humanoid sculpture that looks to be continually strolling through ever-changing landscapes. The 3D movement is displayed on four 16K resolution video displays that are arranged in a 4×4-feet box.
According to Christie’s, the dynamic video sculpture included a polished aluminum metal and mahogany wood frame, as well as two media servers. “We had a lot of TVs on rollers in our studio and were rolling them about in different shapes and patterns,” Beeple told Noah Davis, Christie’s head of digital sales. Then I thought, ‘We should wrap them up into a small box unit.’ We saw right away that this set of displays was a strong canvas, and everything we placed on them looked amazing.”
Human One was sold with a dynamic NFT that was coined on October 28, 2021. Beeple will remain to have remote access and creative control over the project, which is a unique benefit. As long as the artist is alive, he can modify the creative components, such as the scenery. The Artwork is constantly displayed via the Physical Element. Beeple will keep remote access to the Physical Element to verify appropriate operation and/or to improve the Artwork on display. In their description of Human One, Christie’s stated, “Beeple certifies that the Physical Element has no characteristics meant to compromise the continued presentation of the Artwork.”
Be prepared to witness pixelated faces: A considerable proportion of the items on this list are CryptoPunks. Larva Labs, a duo of Canadian engineers, created 10,000 Ethereum-based avatars in 2017 and distributed them for free. They’ve gone on to become the O.G. of NFT profile photo projects, creating an entire industry of fans, like the Bored Ape Yacht Club, since that modest beginning. They’ve produced more than $2 billion in trading volume and hundreds of million-dollar transactions along the road, including this one.
CryptoPunk #5822 was sold for 8000 ETH in a large sale on 13 February 2022, which converted to about USD 23.7 million at the time of sale. As a result, it is the most expensive CryptoPunk sale ever.
The cryptopunk belongs to the Alien series and has bluish-green skin with only one feature – a blue bandana. Deepak Thapliyal, the CEO of blockchain infrastructure business Chain, is rumored to have purchased Punk #5822.
CryptoPunk #7523 was auctioned at a Sotheby’s auction for USD 11.75 million on June 10, 2021, currently the second valuable ‘punk’ of all the collections. #7523 is one of the collection’s nine Alien series figures.
A knitted hat and earrings are also worn by the bluish-green-skinned figure. It’s also the only Alien and one of the 175 characters in the collection to wear a medical mask.
According to Reuters, Israeli entrepreneur Shalom Mackenzie, the largest stakeholder of digital sports business DraftKings, purchased the cryptocurrency.
A crypto painting called CryptoPunk #3100 was sold for USD 7.58 million on the same day Beeple made history. The #3100 is one of the nine Alien ‘punks,’ just as the #7523. It has bluish-green skin with a white-and-blue headband as its only distinguishing characteristic. Only 406 of the 10,000 people in the collection wear a headband, and only 333 of them have only one characteristic.
CryptoPunk #3100 was the most expensive ‘punk’ at the time of its sale, slightly edging out #7804, which had established the record the day before.
It’s been in the headlines for a while because of the price it’s advertised for. It is now on the market for USD 114.54, according to Larva Labs. It would be the most expensive NFT ever if it were to be realized.
CryptoPunks’ success has generated a number of clones, with Punks variants on practically every blockchain platform that supports NFTs, from Solana to Stacks, Algorand, and beyond.
Even Tron has its own CryptoPunks clone, and while TPunks NFTs don’t usually sell for a lot of money—the cheapest available at the time of writing is only $130—this one did. Justin Sun, the co-founder of Tron, paid 120 million TRX ($10.5 million) for TPunk #3442 in August.
Right-click and Save As guy
Xcopy is the alias of an England crypto artist whose work is among the most sought-after on exchanges. Xcopy has sold over 1,900 artworks, as per The Crypto Times, and is famous for his dystopian and death-themed creations. The Save and Right-click As man is the name of an NFT artwork produced by the creator as a joke on people who believe NFTs are useless since they can be downloaded with a single right-click.
A figure in enormous sunglasses and a sweatshirt is seen in the artwork. Its red-tinged lips move continuously as if whispering. In early December 2021, “Right-click and Save As guy” was auctioned on the SuperRare marketplace at USD 7.08 million. It was purchased by a guy known online as ‘Cozomo de Medici,’ who has a large collection of NFT digital treasures.
Some believe that ‘Cozomo de Medici’ is the identity of rapper Snoop Dogg. Even while the American star confessed that he is the man behind the alias, it has not been independently confirmed.
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