In recent years, we have seen a new trend in the art world: NFTs. These acronyms refer to "non-fungible tokens" or non-fungible tokens in Spanish. Although it may seem like a complicated concept, it is actually quite simple to understand.
Non-fungible tokens are a kind of digital certificate used to prove the authenticity and ownership of something unique, like a piece of art, a video game, a tweet, or anything else that can be represented digitally. Unlike "fungible" tokens like cryptocurrencies, which are interchangeable and have the same value, non-fungible tokens are unique and have a value of their own.
To better understand how NFTs work in the art world, we can think of a physical work of art. When we buy a painting, we receive a unique piece that we can hang on our wall and sell in the future. With NFTs, we can do the same but in digital format. When we buy an NFT, we are buying a unique piece that allows us to show that we are the owners of that digital work of art.
A practical example of how NFTs work in the art world is the case of Beeple, a digital artist who sold a digital artwork in the form of an NFT for $69 million in March 2021. The work, titled "Everydays: The First 5000 Days", is a collection of 5000 images that Beeple had created over 13 years. By selling it as an NFT, the buyer acquired ownership and authenticity of this unique work of art.
To better understand NFTs and their impact on the art world, it is important to understand the concept of blockchain. In simple terms, blockchain is a distributor ledger technology that allows various parties to share information and validate transactions in a secure, transparent manner without the need for intermediaries.
Each blockchain transaction is recorded in a block, and each block is connected to the previous one, thus forming an immutable chain of records. This means that once a transaction is recorded on the blockchain, it cannot be modified or deleted.
NFTs are built on the blockchain, which gives them a number of unique features. First, information about the ownership and authenticity of the digital artwork is recorded on the blockchain, ensuring that it is verifiable and difficult to falsify. Second, being unique and non-tradable, NFTs have their own value that is not affected by market fluctuations.
For example, if someone buys a piece of digital art as an NFT, he can be sure that he is the sole owner of that piece, since the ownership information is recorded on the blockchain. Furthermore, the value of that work is not dependent on the value of other digital artworks, but rather has an intrinsic value of its own that can rise or fall depending on its popularity and demand.
This NFT by the artist Beeple sold for 69 million dollars
The use of blockchain and NFTs in the art world have a significant impact on the way art is valued and traded. In the past, the value of a work of art largely depended on the reputation of the artist and the opinion of experts in the art market. With NFTs, artists can directly sell their works to buyers, allowing them more control over their work and greater transparency in the sales process.
Furthermore, NFTs have the potential to democratize access to art and culture, as they allow artists to reach a global audience without having to go through traditional intermediaries such as galleries or auction houses. This means that artists can sell their works at more affordable prices and reach a wider audience than ever before.
It is simply a new form of digital ownership that is transforming the way we perceive and value art (and other assets). Although much remains to be explored in this field, NFTs have the potential to democratize access to art and give digital artists the opportunity to monetize their work in a fairer and more transparent way.