What is an NFT?
An NFT is a new kind of digital asset that was introduced in 2017. It is similar to a traditional asset, such as a stock or a bond, but it uses blockchain technology to create an immutable record of ownership.
An NFT can be used to buy and sell goods and services, just like any other asset. However, one important difference between an NFT and a traditional asset is that an NFT is not subject to government regulation. This makes them very attractive to businesses that want to avoid restrictions on their operations.
Mike Winkelmann’s artwork, an NFT by digital artist Beeple, sold for a whopping $69 million in 2021. This introduced new media to blockchain and shows that NFTs are here to stay. Rich stars such as Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan, Eminem, Grimes and others have since followed suit.
10. Beeple’s Crossroad- $6.6m
At the time it sold, ‘Crossroad’ by highly regarded artist Beeple was the most expensive NFT to ever sell. It sold for $6.6 million on the NFT Exchange Nifty Gateway. The piece depicts a solemn figure lying on the ground, which is meant to symbolize Trump after he lost the 2020 election to Joe Biden. What was cool about the NFT is that it sold before the election and would change based on who won (The Donald or Joe Biden).
9. CryptoPunk #3100 – $7.58 million
Sold at $7.58 million in March 2021, CryptoPunk #3100 is part of the nine rare alien punk band members on Ethereum and it also wears a headband. As of May 2022, this CryptoPunk is listed for 35,000 ETH. If it ever gets sold, it will be the biggest NFT sale in the history of CryptoPunks.
8. CryptoPunk #5577 – $7.7 million
A another CryptoPunk sits at number eight. It was sold for 2925 ETH in February 2022. The buyer of the CryptoPunk may have been Robert Leshner, CEO of Compound Finance, who tweeted “Yeehaw” after the purchase
7. CryptoPunk #4156 – $10.26 million
One of the most expensive NFTs is a CryptoPunk with a blue bandana. Its previous owner was someone with a matching pseudonym, who acquired it at $1.25 million in February of 2020 but then sold it for $10.26 million in December of 2020.
6. CryptoPunk #7523 – $11.75 million
The most valuable NFT blockchain asset is CryptoPunk #7523. It was auctioned off for $11.75 million during COVID pandemic in June 2021 because it’s of the alien edition and it’s the only mask-wearing alien.
5. CryptoPunk #5822 – $23.7 million
One of the world’s first famous Non-Fungible Tokens is a CryptoPunk that was sold for 8,000 ETH in February 2022. It’s one of the rarest CryptoPunks because there are only 9 in the entire NFT collection and it has a bandana.
4. HUMAN ONE – $28.9 million
The first physical artwork created by Beeple, HUMAN ONE was auctioned by Christie’s for $28.9 million. The piece is a moving sculpture that displays an endless video of an astronaut journeying through places at different times of the day. This hybrid work reflects Beeple’s artistic ambition to create art beyond the digital realm.
3. Clock – $52.7 million
The ‘Clock’ created by Julian Assange and Pak essentially acts as a clock, counting the days that Assange has been imprisoned. The goal of this representation was to raise funds for Assange’s legal defense and it was picked up by Julian Assange DAO (a collection of over 10,000 people pooling their money together to purchase the object and support Assange).
2. Everydays: The First 5000 Days – $69.3 million
The artwork Everydays is owned by Mike Winkelmann, better known as Beeple. Through Christie’s, a digital art institute, the NFT was sold to investor Metakovan for $69.3 million in February 2021. The artwork is a collage of Beeple’s 5,000 previous artworks and can also be interpreted as a representation of his development as an artist through the collage.
1. The Merge — $91.8M
A unique artwork, composed of many individual pieces, was sold on the Nifty Gateway Internet auction company for $91.8 million. The artist is unidentified and the work was fractionalized to 312,686 pieces distributed to 28,983 buyers on the decentralized marketplace.
NFTs are experiencing rapid growth and sales, while also spawning a variety of uses. Right now since they’re still in their early stages, we can expect to see more utilities and adoptions than simply digital collectibles and possibly even higher sales.