NFTs are Dead: $11.8 Million Dollar Crypto Punk Sells at Sotheby’s

11th June 2021

A new world record sale for a CryptoPunk recently took place at Sotheby’s Natively Digital auction that ran from June 3 -10th 2021.  

This ultra rare 1 of 9 alien CryptoPunk #7523 was won by Shalom Meckenzie, the largest shareholder of sports-betting outfit @DraftKings, and went for a whopping $11.75 Million dollars.

This CryptoPunk was first minted on June 23rd 2017 by Larva Labs and is 1 of only 10,000 original CryptoPunks in existence.  CryptoPunks became the genesis NFT collection, and thereby poster-child  of the Ethereum blockchain, and has inspired the ERC-721 token standard that is the underlying technology that powers today’s digital collectibles. 

While technically only 24 x 24 pixels in size with a very simple 8-bit style, there are no two punks that are the same, much like the owners of these rare and valuable NFTs. 

CryptoPunks have come to symbolize the very early days of the blockchain space and embody the energy and spirit of challenging the status quo; at the intersection of what is considered art, technology, and traditional methods of collecting and appreciating art.

 

NFTs enable a whole new model for ownership of art and collectibles, and this Sotheby’s auction proves this to the world yet again – on the heels of mainstream media sources claiming the NFTs were dead no less. 

You may have seen CryptoPunks used as avatars all over twitter and anywhere you can add a profile image. The incredibly passionate community that has formed around CryptoPunks has seen members identify with their CryptoPunk NFTs so much that they use them as  consistent digital representations of themselves. 

Collecting art has largely been reserved for private spaces like the home or some other type of gallery and is a way that collectors can show their appreciation of culture and how they fit within their world.  With the advent of digital collectibles like the CryptoPunks, collectors can now digitally flex who they are, and their place in the Crypto ecosystem. As owners of one of the pioneering technologies that, in my opinion, will lead to the mass adoption of blockchain technology – using what we now know as non-fungible tokens. 

This $11.75 Million dollar sale not only solidifies the value of the CryptoPunks project as a whole, it further legitimizes the innovation that NFTs bring to the world.  This historic moment is not limited to art alone, as many who look from the outside at this 24 x 24 pixel CryptoPunk still miss the bigger picture behind what this technology truly means. 

Digital ownership, transferability of assets, authentication and access. From this minimalistic piece of Crypto history, will spring a wealth of innovations that will touch nearly every sector of our lives. Most people will never have any knowledge or idea that non-fungible tokens have anything to do with the infrastructure behind the services, technologies, applications, and experiences they will be using in the not too distant future. CryptoPunks, in many ways, will be the genesis of a new digital paradigm, regardless of their value, measured by monetary means.

I had the chance to ask SillyTuna the owner of CryptoPunk #7523 that sold at the Sotheby’s auction, what was next for him? he responded with “Focus on my own projects (games, nft’s), do some donations later this year, and think about how to deal with the Mccoy artwork.” which just made me smile, as I personally love to see good humans, win in this space and  witness the awesome things they go on to do.

Congrats again to SillyTuna and the whole CryptoPunk community on this incredible sale, as we see more evidence that NFTs are not in fact mortal and can not be “dead” for very long.

 

SillyTuna

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