While 2020 will forever be remembered as the year of COVID-19, it was also witness to the rise of cryptocurrency and a popularised, mass-cultural form of the scarcity-based art market. This international panel-discussion will focus on the recent hype surrounding nonfungible tokens (NFTs), or cryptocurrency’s answer to the unique art object, and assess what it means for the practice of art around the world. Tracking the impact of NFTs on economic, technological, societal and practical levels, the panel will look at the rise of the NFT from the point of view of artists, collectors and critics. Are NFTs just a passing fad for a global artworld that’s currently grounded? A means by which to consume energy now that global travel is (largely) off the cards? How might they change the practice, collection and distribution of art around the globe? To what extent are NFTs a sign of the revenge of popular culture against the elite cultures, gatekeepers and tastemakers of traditional fine arts? Might paintings be phased out in favour of JPEGS? And, more basically, how do NFTs function as artworks and are they any good?
Rahel Aima, writer, editor and critic
Dr. Tina Rivers Ryan, Assistant Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo
Muhammed Farizwan bin Muhammed Fajari, artist
This talk will be hosted by JJ Charlesworth, Editor of Art Review.
This is in partnership with ArtReview.