The cryptocurrency sector will witness a noteworthy development this month. The London Art Gallery will auction Andy Warhol’s paintings in exchange for bitcoin (BTC) and ether (ETH). Amidst all the blockchain developments taking the world by storm, auctioning an artwork for cryptocurrency at a high-profile event is amongst the first such instances.
Artwork up for Grabs
Dadiani Fine Art London, in collaboration with Maecenas, the decentralized “art-investment” platform, will hold an auction for Andy Warhol’s artworks on June 20, 2018. As per terms, 49 percent of the works are available for sale in digital currencies bitcoin, ethereum and Maecenas’ native currency ART. Going under the hammer is Warhol’s 1980 work “14 Small Electric Chairs.”
The auction makes use of smart contracts built on the Ethereum blockchain to determine the final prices of the piece.
The organizers have taken into consideration the possible reluctance of potential buyers conducting the auction via cryptocurrency, courtesy of the latter’s infamy with hacks and security infiltrations. Strict local regulations will be enforced to prevent money-laundering, frauds, and other illegalities.
The piece is priced at $5.6 million, equivalent to 785 BTC at the time of writing, with the reserved price settled at $4 million.
Crypto Initiatives in the Art Sector
While this marks the first high-profile art for cryptocurrency auction, similar events have taken place at smaller scales.
In February 2018, the Art Stage Singapore auctioned four creations of regional artists in exchange for cryptocurrencies. The event was organized by cryptocurrency payment platform Aditus Pay to display their software’s functionality.
However, Dadiani’s event may prove to be the litmus for blockchain-based auctions involving high-profile artworks or exhibits.
The founder of Dadiani Syndicate, Eleesa Dadiani commented on the event:
“We aim to render the future of fine art investments to global reach. The cryptocurrency will broaden the market, bringing a new type of buyer to art and luxury.”
Blockchain Finding new Use-Cases
Blockchain solutions have consistently been used to track data records in traditional finance, shipping, and logistics industries. However, to the cryptocurrency community, the high-profile art development is yet another instance of the distributed ledger technology’s (DLT) utility.
For industry observers, the digital currency sector has faced significant relapses in the recent months. Fortunately, events such as these bring the technology, and overlaying cryptocurrencies, back on the radar of the mainstream media.