The NFT market is moving forward even if you haven't yet entirely wrapped your head around it. Digital art sales are in an eclipse to surpass the fine art trade. I interviewed a company looking to tap the NFT art market by making frames.
Non-fungible token (NFT) sales hit $25 billion in 2021. In 2020, the global art market was valued at approximately $50 billion.
"Digital art that's only been around for a couple of years in its current form is already looking to eclipse the traditional art market, which is insane," Jeanne Anderson, CEO & Co-Founder of Danvas, told Cybernews. Danvas recently has fundraised $7 million to develop a digital art canvas - a digital frame for your NFT art.
The digital canvas is supposed to make NFT art more engaging and immersive.
"Digital art in the future is so much richer than a 2D piece that you just hang on the wall. There's music, sound, interaction. Some of these artworks evolve overtime which is remarkable. We are talking about expanding the artist's palette", Anderson said.
I sat down with her to learn how to make sense of the NFT market and its sustainability.
Why do people buy NFTs?
As with many exclusive items, people want to brag about their NFTs. At the moment, all they can do is send you the link, and a particular piece of art will just pop up on your screen. Even though you don't own it, the experience is pretty much the same.
"If I own a monumental piece of artwork, the fact that I can only see it on a desktop or a phone, it's just mind-bogglingly limited. Our vision is to create a beautiful sculptural object, a frame that is worthy of an investment piece," Anderson said.
Many people buy NFT art simply as an investment, hoping to sell one day for profit. For some, it's a great way to support an artist.
"I also have seen that some people buy them because they love them, they have an emotional reaction to a piece of digital art, and for them, it's just capturing that magical emotional moment," Anderson said.
No matter the reasons why you may spend thousands of dollars on a piece of code in your wallet and the direction where the NFT market is headed, artists benefit from it at the moment, for sure.
Renaissance moment for digital artists
Anderson reckons we are starting to see the beginning of the digital art renaissance. Digital artists have been underrecognized and underappreciated mainly because it was impossible to attach value to their unique art pieces. Collectors couldn't figure out how exactly they could hold value.
"With the dawn of NFTs, and the ability to have a permanent record, there you have unlocked the magic. Finally, an entire group of artists has the ability to participate in a market where they were never able to participate before."
On the other hand, the NFT art market can be confusing for collectors with so many projects around and numerous NFT drops. In New York, there's now even an NFT vending machine, and so you can spend your extra dollars on a pigeon NFT instead of soda.
Many opportunists behind the NFT projects dived in just for a quick cash grab.
"The answer to this is going to be curation. As curators come into the space and help shape the way that we perceive the art and help us understand the categories of art that are currently thriving and help us understand the meaning behind the work," Anderson said.
Danvas received $7 million funding, and that, according to Anderson, shows positive sentiment towards the future of the market. She believes investors are not here to gamble.
"Our investors, I know for a fact, don't see it just as a trend. They understand that this investment is an investment in a meaningful future of digital art, and the way that they look at it is a long-term investment."
Not only novices engage with NFTs but established companies, such as Coca-Cola and auction houses like Sotheby's, experiment with NFTs, making the market more sustainable.
"The dawn of web3 is a meaningful new shift in a way that engineers approach a lot of different technical problems," Anderson said.
She believes that NFT art just happens to be the first web3 example that makes sense to people.
"We are part of the hype of web3. But there's an underlying truth to the fact that decentralized blockchain is an incredibly powerful way to develop all sorts of engineering projects in the future."
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