The museum of the future: the rise of digital art in galleries

Digital works are purchased every day through Ethereum and are collected in virtual spaces. It’s worth considering that the area occupied by NFTs will no longer be solely digital. The frenzy around crypto art is increasingly moving to a physical space. The first experiments happened in March, when the Virtual Niche: Have You Ever Seen Memes in the Mirror? The exhibition was set up at UCCA Center for Contemporary Art in Beijing. This was a virtual world that put crypto art on display for the real world, broken down by categories that distinguish it. In the city of Miami, instead, billboards of one of the most famous NFT works appeared: Cryptopunks. The first official gallery, entirely dedicated to NFT, was held in New York, in the Superchief gallery. This earthly venue showcased the work of over 300 artists through high-resolution screens. 

Chain Reaction

Around the same time, Atlanta-based gallery ABV partnered with marketplace Nifty Gateway to present Chain Reaction. This is an exhibition of crypto artists with 20 digital displays showcasing the works. In Europe, however, German writer and artist Kenny Schacter is curating a show. Titled Breadcrumbs, at the Cologne Gallery, it explores the world of NFTs with a small exhibition that explores the importance of crypto art to the digital world and physical art. Art experts and gallery creators have differing opinions on the future of NFTs in museums. For many years, prior to Beeple’s inception, works have been made that are projected or are entirely digital, to show different perspectives in museums. But showcasing crypto art is contradictory in itself, given that it is a type of collecting that was born digitally for digital. However, sooner or later the time would come when NFTs would need a physical space, to provide the public with a unique, highresolution experience. Collectors want to showcase, for a wide audience, what they have invested in. 

The potential of NFT

NFTs are also an additional source of revenue for the art galleries themselves, as evidenced by a few in particular. Through digital exhibitions, a single museum was able to sell $150,000 worth of art in the first week. We’re still in the early days of changing the fortunes of museums and art galleries, but soon we may see three-dimensional and digital works displayed on giant screens for incredible and unique experiences. The potential of NFTs is yet to be fully expressed and this can only create value for collectors, museum managers and artists.

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