Over coffee #11 bis with Benjamin Spark

The purchase of my first NFT (Non Fungible Token) in public sales

Discovering NFT with The Art of NFT and Benjamin Spark in March 2021

I met Benjamin Spark exactly one year ago on the social audio network Clubhouse. With Florent Thurin, they host every evening a meeting "in French: l'art du NFT.

First of all, I'll give a quick reminder for those who don't know the "crypto" vocabulary yet and a quick definition of the "NFT or Non Fungible Token". As the pioneers explained to me, let's start by imagining a Token (or a fungible token) based on the example of a crypto-currency such as Bitcoin. One Bitcoin then represents a Fungible Token or literally a token that is divided into smaller amounts (e.g. 0.5 Bitcoin).

Conversely, a non-fungible token or NFT is registered in the blockchain in the same way as a fungible token with the addition of different options that make it unique. In other words, the NFT can only be sold in "whole" or in a single transaction including those that will be scheduled in advance. Depending on certain predefined conditions, the NFT becomes a decentralized tool to perform transactions under certain predefined conditions. 

This is why, in order to fully understand the mechanism of the blockchain and the stakes of NFTs, we are moving towards a new eco-system and language that can be confusing. Let's forget our habits and use the codes initiated by the World Wild Web in 1989. 

The birth of a new generation of digital artists 

In this group, other people took the time to explain what was being discovered. I think in particular of Marc Veyrat, who was already working at the stage after NFT. He made me discover the future worlds of virtual reality and research of the university laboratory "Laval virtual" Center. 

We experienced an extra ordinary conference live with Norbert Hilaire, co-author of "L'art numérique " published in 2003. The researches of the academic confirmed what we lived. 

Other initiatives around the crypto-art eco-system away from traditional galleries and auction houses

Nicolas Niksic (founder of Nft France, the first media dedicated to NFT, a young man of letters with a talented synthesis mind. Not forgetting Me Ingrid-Mery Haziot, lawyer and outstanding teacher and Matthieu Quinou, doctor of law. In short, this small group of connoisseurs explained to us (in good French please) the birth of a new artistic movement: the NFT or crypto art which was going to impact our values forever. Digital art was finally entering the field of contemporary art, to the great displeasure of the institutionalists who had fallen asleep and still seem outdated or don't understand anything. 

Benjamin Spark, born in 1969, 2 years after me, is French-Belgian. He makes a point of using our beautiful language and translating a rather difficult franglais technical jargon. This was very useful for me to understand what John Karp was saying (in the other NFT Morning room )! Every evening at 6pm we would discuss an incredibly rich news of this eco system. We were starting to talk about Web 3.0. New notions were emerging mixing crypto-currencies - blockchain technologies - new artistic creations - disruption of the relationship between the traditional art market and the expectations of the new generation coming from digital art - sales records and economy. We were living in historic moments in our opinion. 

March 10, 2022, first authorized public auction

In the meantime, Lucie Eléonore Riveron, co-founder of the Maison Fauve Paris Auction now co-hosts the art of NFT which becomes a podcast. Very useful on one hand to listen again in the car, but I had a little lost the contact of the live. 

Indeed, during the summer of 2021, I was busy launching Riviera Fine Art in Monaco. We receive at The Office Center Monaco a personality of the art market "Around a coffee".

Thus, we had the pleasure of hosting Remy Peretz in December 2021 for the release of the NFT Revolution book, co-authored with John Karp, along with an NFT collector and a Poaps, the only proof of attendance at an event. I'll come back to this later. 

"The burnt auction #nft #cryptoart #digitalart"

Finally, the authorization of the public sale of an NFT is given for the first time in France. Until now, there was a legal risk for the sale of an intangible asset via public auction. The supervisory authority, the Conseil des Ventes Volontaires, had given an unfavorable opinion.

The proposed law to modernize the regulation of the art market of 2019 has just been definitively adopted on February 28, 2022.

the general conditions of sale "of which particular provisions relating to the sales with the biddings of physical goods to which are joined NFT" appeared during this sale. Lawyers will appreciate this detail which could call into question the previous sales which did not detail this point. 

The Benjamin Spark work lot n°25 was estimated between 1 000 / 2 000 €. A real internet bidding battle pushed the bid up to 2 300 or 2 996,90 € including fees. Benjamin is a communication professional (I found out later) so always cool! How does he deal with the incessant and same questions that come up! I'm sure he got his inspiration from comic book superheroes. The international press is no secret. He is as much a fan of economics and geopolitics as he is of art history. I invite you to discover 

  • Presentation Untitle, OB_01 2022
  • Certificate / exhibition catalog

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