NFTs made their debut at Basel’s most important art fair with Galerie Nagel Draxler’s “Crypto Kiosk”, attracting the attention of collectors and generating sales of over $100,000.
Not even Art Basel, one of the most prestigious art fairs in the Modern and Contemporary art market, seems to be immune to the trend.
It is a shift that is being driven by the protagonists of the most innovative art scene: artists, art galleries, auction houses and collectors want more of it and the market is taking off.
The new NFT dimension at Art Basel
Galerie Nagel Draxler realized the potential of proposing an entire stand dedicated to Non Fungible Tokens at Art Basel. In its “Crypto Kiosk”, with walls and floors covered entirely in the unequivocal wording “NFTism”, it exhibited the physical works of artists such as Luke Willis Thompson, DotPigeon, Sarah Friend, Olive Allen and Kevin Abosch for sale on the OpenSea platform.
A real slap in the face for VIP collectors ready to buy in the “classic” way.
Behind the design and curatorship is the now well-known crypto artist and Artnet News columnist Kenny Schachter, who also curated the “BREADCRUMBS: ART IN THE AGE OF NFTISM” exhibition at the gallery’s Cologne headquarters.
Until 26 September, the last day of Art Basel, the Draxler gallery will accept Ether (ETH) for NFTs that range in price from 1 ETH to 40 ETH (approximately $2,500-$100,000).
Representatives of the gallery interviewed by Artnet said.
“It was interesting to place NFTs in a fair context. We can’t even sell the works here… It’s a bit of a conceptual approach”.
The future of art and collecting
Draxler Gallery reportedly sold Olive Allen’s NFT for 8 ETH, around €25,000 on its opening day. An edition of Anna Ridler’s “Mosaic Virus” sold for £20,000, while Kevin Abosch’s NFT sold for around €40,000 on the VIP collectors-only preview day.
However, there was no shortage of hiccups, especially on preview day, so the gallery chose to make a few exceptions in order not to blow the sales.
While collectors hoped to buy the works immediately, the gallery’s specialists supported them in accessing and purchasing them on the OpenSea platform.
Nonetheless, Nagel Draxler allowed some customers to pay in euros or dollars via the standard procedure, and then make arrangements with the artists to close the sale with their wallet.
Old habits die hard, yet Crypto Art and NFTs are slowly gaining more and more space in the Olympus of art and among major collectors.