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Art Blocks Surges 500% as New NFT Collection Drops

Posted by
Ian Kane

$1.4 million in sales in the last 7 days

Art Blocks, a digital storefront for programmable art projects on the Ethereum blockchain, has seen a massive surge in sales and transaction volume. Spurred by the release of a collection in collaboration with Sotheby’s auction house that includes digital art from the first 19 curated projects on Art Blocks. 

Sales of NFTs on the platform have increased by almost 200% to 952, which has driven $1.4 million in transaction volume. This surge in activity has placed Art Blocks in 7th position in the overall NFT collection rankings according to DappRadar. Interestingly the average price of an NFT sale on Art Blocks in the last 7 days is around $1,500. Importantly, the recent increase in traders and sales means that Art Blocks is edging ever closer to leading NFT collections platform Rarible. 

Natively Digital 

The NFT art auction event is known as Natively Digital and is one of several high-profile NFT sales by Sotheby’s in 2021. The 19 pieces of art sold for a combined $81,900 giving each piece an average sale price of around $4,300. Looking at the floor prices of the individual pieces on Art Blocks reveals that things appear to have been sold on the cheap. For example, the floor price of Nimbuds is 0.49 ETH or around $1200 whilst a Ringer art NFT would sell for at least 4.5 ETH or around $9,000 on OpenSea. It appears the winning bidder in the Sotheby’s auction has just scooped up a bargain for all 19 pieces. 

The 19 pieces of digital art

Drops drive activity 

The Sotheby’s collection contains 19 separate artworks, each of which is special in its own right due to being one of the first to be generated on the Art Blocks platform. Receiving attention from both the crypto art community and the Sotheby’s art community has clearly helped drive the NFT marketplace to new highs.

Importantly, the sales of digital art at Sotheby’s are not tracked on-chain so this is therefore not reflected in the data shown on DappRadar. What is occurring is a domino effect brought about by the high-profile collection and another drop driving awareness and usage of the platform.  

An additional reason for the surge in activity could be a drop that arrived on the 7th of June in collaboration with Tyler Hobbs. A visual artist from Texas, USA, the Fidenza collection is touted as the artist’s most versatile algorithm to date. “Although the program stays focused on structured curves and blocks, the varieties of scale, organization, texture, and color usage it can employ create a wide array of generative possibilities.” says the creator. 

In 2021 we have witnessed both Sotheby’s and Christie’s engage with NFT art collections as a wave of interest in digital collectibles swept the globe. Sotheby’s was also recently involved in the auction of a rare Alien CryptoPunk that ended up selling for over $11 million. More interesting is the fact that as the cryptocurrency market appears to be headed into a bear market sales of NFTs are still buoyant. NBA Top Shot last week received a nice 50% bump in sales week-over-week whilst digital collectibles on Wax appear completely unaffected by the price crash. 

What is Art Blocks? 

In Art Blocks users pick a style that they like, pay for the work, and a randomly generated version of the content is created by an algorithm and sent to their Ethereum account. The resulting piece might be a static image, 3D model, or interactive experience. 

Each output is different and there are endless possibilities for the types of content that can be created on the platform. What makes the Art Blocks platform stand out from others is that the generative script itself is written to the blockchain. Meaning that the NFTs that are minted from it are not controlled or curated by the artist, and the output of the program is a surprise to everyone. 

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