Beeple, the artist behind the top-selling NFT of all time, is building an IRL studio in South Carolina to create and share digital artwork.
Noted NFT artist Beeple, whose claim to fame is being the creative mind behind the top-selling NFT of all time, is building an IRL digital art studio in Charleston, South Carolina. Apparently, the space will be used to create and share digital artwork and expose new audiences to NFTs and vice versa.
Beeple, who is Mike Winkelmann in real life, created a buzz in the NFT space last year after his NFT artwork, “Everydays: The First 5000 Days,” fetched a record-breaking $69.3 million sale at a Christie’s auction. Sealing his newfound popularity, Winkelmann saw himself on a Time magazine cover and appearances on “The Tonight Show.”
This time around, Beeple hopes to expand the NFT world’s scope through a real-world studio that will host exhibitions and reach even more people.
Beeple’s “Build” Project
On Thursday, Beeple shared a video of the ongoing construction of an overhauled warehouse, which would be the enormous South Carolina NFT studio, through a thread on his official Twitter account. In the video, we see the initial steps wherein workers are tearing down walls and developing the space inside the future Beeple Studios.
In the tweet thread, Beeple said the studio would be an “outlet for not just my artwork, but the entire digital art/NFT community.” He also shared that he plans to host exhibitions in the studio while searching for unique ways to showcase NFT artwork for real-world patrons to view on-site.
“Coming together and experiencing digital artwork IRL is something that I think will help bring in the next wave of collectors,” he wrote, “and that is precisely what we need to move past this bear market.”
Beeple added that NFT creators must “find new ways” to draw in people who may have heard or read about NFTs but don’t fully grasp the concept of these digital collectibles. Perhaps these people have heard that NFTs are blockchain tokens signifying ownership of a unique item—digital artwork, collectibles, real-world items—but have no idea how that could be possible.
“I believe by showing people that this artwork can absolutely be shared and appreciated in real life, not just on our tiny screens,” Beeple wrote, “they will see that this medium is just like any other with the ability to bring beauty, provoke thoughtful discussion, and truly move us.”
No Opening Date for Beeple’s Studio
Beeple has not shared a timeline for the studio’s opening or when it will start hosting events. Nevertheless, he did say that the video he shared represented the first half of construction and that the second half was almost complete.
Beeple’s beginnings pale in comparison to the notoriety he found after his top-selling NFT. He started as a digital artist posting daily artwork and later became a graphic designer of concert artwork for celebrities like Katy Perry, Justin Bieber, and Eminem.
When the NFT market started expanding in late 2020, Beeple began selling his artwork, and soon enough, he was breaking records in the process. His popularity soared to great heights after selling “Everydays: The First 5000 Days” at an auction in March 2021. The NFT artwork was a collage of all the previous daily artwork postings.
In November, he followed up that $69.3 million sale with the $28.9 million sale of “Human One.” It was a physical/digital hybrid sculpture with an NFT component.
Since he entered the NFT space, Beeple hasn’t failed to incorporate a real-world component into his digital sales. For instance, “Human One” is set within a holographic terminal with dynamically changing digital artwork. He also collaborated with a startup company, Infinite Objects, to provide buyers with a dedicated video display for each piece of artwork sold.
Ryan Zurrer, founder of Vine Ventures and Dialectic, who purchased “Human One” last year, called Beeple’s upcoming Beeple Studios “a weird mix of Warhol’s studio & Bell Labs in their respective primes.”
“He composed a wild combination of engineers and creatives, building next-gen art with space-age tooling. It will change the way we think about digital art,” Zurrer said.
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