“Two years ago we only had one brave idea. Today we turn a new page in the history of numismatics, further exploring the potential of central bank digital currencies (CBDC). This innovation will bring real benefits to society by contributing to future digital solutions. It is therefore highly symbolic that LBCOIN is dedicated to the signatories of the 1918 Act of Independence – the brave visionaries who laid the foundation for modern-day Lithuania” said Marius Jurgilas, Member of the Board of the Bank of Lithuania.
The digital collector coin LBCOIN was issued on 23 July and consists of six digital tokens and one physical silver collector coin. The Bank of Lithuania will issue 4,000 LBCOINs, that is, 24,000 digital tokens and 4,000 physical collector coins.
Each token features one of the 20 signatories and belongs to one of the six signatory categories (priests, presidents, diplomats, industrialists, academics, municipal servants) with 4,000 tokens allotted to each category. Having purchased LBCOIN, collectors will get six randomly selected digital tokens which they will be able to exchange for a physical collector coin, store in a dedicated e-wallet on the e-shop, send as a gift, swap with other collectors or transfer to a public NEM wallet. The price of LBCOIN is EUR 99.
The physical silver collector coins, bearing an unconventional denomination of €19.18, were minted at the Lithuanian Mint. In size and form, they resemble a credit card, depicting the Act of Independence and its signatories. The physical coin is proof-like and weighs 36.36 g.
The LBCOIN project has been carried out by the Bank of Lithuania and a team of external providers. iTree Lietuva developed the LBCOIN platform and installed it in the Bank of Lithuania’s and NEM infrastructures.
Collecting LBCOIN is not a very easy process since buyers are required to remotely confirm their identity and we know that NIFTIES collectors prefer quick transactions and might not be willing to share personal informations when collecting.
Yesterday one very special CryptoKitty named Koshkat (Koshka means cat in Russian) has been sold for 10.500 USD on NiftyGateway.
Koshkat, a unique rare CryptoKitty (together with Catterina, edition of 100) represent the first Artist Series of CryptoKitties by Momo Wang, a multiple award-winning and internationally recognised illustrator based in Beijing.
We strongly believe these kinds of collaborations between established NFTs projects and important artists will become more popular in the future and attract the interest of many collectors.
So, when everyone was enjoying the weekend, another big sale happened and created lot of excitement especially in the Cryptopunks Discord channel.
Just a couple of minutes after a rare Zombie+Beanie punk was listed for 60 ETH (around 12,000 USD at that time), a fast collector immediately purchased it.
There are only 88 Zombie punks and 44 Beanie punks making him one of the rarest combinations ever.
Congrats to all the projects, marketplaces and collectors involved in these two historical NFTs sales.
After the last 24 hours hype on CryptoPunks, with more than 90 Eth of volumes (with two Apes sold for 30 Eth each and one Zombie for 9.5 Eth), we decided to interview the team behind the project!
Hi Matt & John! As the founders of LarvaLabs, can you tell those unfamiliar with it what your company does, how did you choose its name, where you are based and what it is like to work in such an environment?
Our company was started in 2005 as a mobile development company for an early smartphone called the T-Mobile Sidekick. The name just sounded funny to us at the time, and didn’t matter that much for the first products we were working on, but it ended up being something we used for 15 years, hah. We work out of Brooklyn which is great, lots of creative people and projects around to draw inspiration from.
Talking about NFTs, you created CryptoPunks which was the first NFT project on Ethereum and the inspiration for the ERC-721 standard. How did the idea come out?
In early 2017 John had been fiddling around with a pixel character generator, and it was getting to the point where it was making lots of really cool interesting characters. We just weren’t quite sure what to do with them. No idea really seemed to be strong enough until we discovered Ethereum, and had the idea to make them unique and ownable on the blockchain. From there we started the work of trying to actually figure out if it was possible, and in what form it should take when actually implemented on Ethereum.
What was the most challenging aspect of developing this project? What about the most rewarding?
The most challenging part was the initial contract development. Smart contract development is very different from other types of development we had done. The blockchain has extremely limited capabilities and is very unforgiving of mistakes. The most rewarding thing has been answering the question “Will anyone be interested in this idea at all?” We weren’t sure that this idea would resonate or not, and to see it become an entire category of art and asset with financial and emotional value is very cool.
Your collectors community is very warm and is slowly increasing despite the project having a few years. What makes CPs still interesting for collectors, in your opinion?
I think it’s interesting because it’s the first thing of its kind on Ethereum. As people get into NFTs, they end up discovering the Cryptopunks and then usually want to own at least one. So as the NFT space grows, people end up discovering us as part of their research. I think the community is welcoming because we all think very long term about the space now. We all imagine NFTs becoming a normal thing for art collectors to own in the future, so we’re all happy to have new people get interested.
Many collectors are asking if it would possible to have CPs listed on marketplaces like OpenSea or maybe on other digital art galleries. Do you think it could be possible in the future? Would you be open to it and which are the technical options?
We've looked into the technical feasibility of supporting Cryptopunks on NFT exchanges. It is indeed possible to build a proxy contract, where a Cryptopunk is wrapped in an NFT, bought/sold/transferred on a platform such as OpenSea, then unwrapped later by the new owner. It's not something we plan to do ourselves, as we like how the market functions as-is, and splitting it between the "classic" market and OpenSea might create some confusion for some users. However, we imagine it's inevitable that somebody will eventually build this bridge. And the cool thing about truly decentralized projects such as the Cryptopunks is that anybody can build it!
Your second project is Autoglyphs, it draws inspiration from Sol LeWitt's art and is somewhat less pop than the previous one. Can you tell us the main differences between Autoglyphs and CPs yourself?
Autoglyphs were designed to be able to answer “Yes” to the question “Is the art entirely on the blockchain?” The algorithm that generates the art, and the 512 generated pieces all live entirely on the blockchain. It was a response to working entirely within the constraints created by the blockchain to see what was possible. It’s also closely related to Sol LeWitt’s work in the way that the instructions are the art, and the final representation can take many forms.
Why did you set the total number of Autoglyphs to 512? Are there any rare or particular ones among them?
Yes, there are 10 different character sets for the Autoglyphs, in decreasing rarity. We mainly set the total number to 512 because we felt that was the number of interesting variations that the generator could produce.
Why did you decide to support 350.org against climate change? Do you know about other NIFTIES projects helping the cause?
We felt that since blockchains are so energy intensive we wanted to help offset that with a donation to a related charity. 350.org was one of the few that had an Ethereum address, so we were able to make the donations entirely on chain as part of the art creation process. We feel that transparency is an important part of what makes blockchain interesting so wanted to take advantage of that. I’m not aware of any other projects specifically benefitting 350.org, but I would encourage others to consider it!
Both CPs and Autoglyphs had also some physical reproductions signed and sold. Do you think this enhances the NFT value on the blockchain or at least manages to help people understand crypto art?
We do think this is an important bridge to the traditional art world, and involves people that otherwise aren’t comfortable with the blockchain or even technology in general. We were very careful to design a system that preserves the true nature of the project however. The true ownership is still on the blockchain, even if there is now a physical representation of that in the print and associated paper wallet.
Any other project in the NFTs space in the pipeline? We know you do not usually release info in advance, but can you tell us what question or wish is the starting point of it?
Nothing to talk about at the moment! It usually takes us a pretty long time to work through all the details of a project and we usually have a few we’re considering at any one time, so it’s hard to tell which one will end up worth releasing.
Last but not least, a curiosity: will you ever sell your Alien Punk?
Tough question! Probably not? We only have one Alien, so we’re very protective of it. Never say never, but we’ve been able to resist some pretty high offers so far at least!
For the next five weeks starting Monday, Panini Blockchain will deliver a digital collection with the 27-card Digital NBA Sneaker Series. The digital cards — all 1/1s — feature facsimile autographs and prime sneaker swatches honoring some of the standout members of the 2019 NBA Draft Class, including Zion Williamson, Ja Morant, RJ Barrett, Rui Hachimura and more.
Five to six new cards will be introduced each Monday for the next five weeks and will open for bidding in a Dutch Auction format. Card prices will drop incrementally until the card is sold.
Once collectors purchase their Digital NBA Sneaker Series Blockchain card through the Panini Blockchain site or using the Panini Direct app, they will be able to to maintain ownership of the card but also have the ability to auction the card securely on the Panini Blockchain to another buyer. In addition, collectors can search the Panini Blockchain site for other auctions. In the near future, the Panini Blockchain site will offer additional functionality such as personal galleries, ownership histories for individual cards and more.
KnownOrigin gallery closed 2019 with over 2,000 digital art editions on the platform and a 3262% monthly sales growth since October 2018. Regarding income, in 2019 top artists were XCOPY, Hackatao, Giant Swan, Alotta Money, Tom Badley and Rare Designer.
Difelice5000, XCOPY and Gary Cartlidge led the market as for number of sales, while Giant Swan and Rare Designer could also boast the record sale price of 10 ETH for the art pieces Purgatory and BLOCKCHAIN EDEN respectively.
Overall, nearly 7,000 artworks were sold on KnownOrigin up to the end of 2019, with a significant increase in the gallery revenue in December. Artists and collectors were over 180 and both the community and the market keep growing.
As a platform mostly devoted to multi-editions, single-edition art pieces have been less than 20% of all works displayed. The average sale price in 2019 was about 0.2ETH, with the highest being 10 ETH (about $1,450 at the time of sale).
Over the past year and a half, MakersPlace team has been contacted by close to 5,000 artists wishing to join the network, and the team is now working with over 1,500 creatives. MakersPlace also has a vibrant online community, counting close to 2,000 people between artists and collectors on its Discord channel, and over 30,000 followers of the team's social media accounts.
In 2019, the average sale price of artworks on the platform was about $150, with the market thriving towards the end of the year. On 15th December EthGirl, a collaboration between SuperRare artists Trevor Jones and Alotta Money, was bought by collector Moderats for 72.1 ETH ($10,027 at the time of sale), breaking the all-time ETH sale record for the digital market.
SuperRare has a varied community of artists and collectors from 154 countries and receives about 25 artist applications per week, maintaining a 10% acceptance rate.
Cryptovoxels had just completed minting and auctioning the final land parcels for Origin City. Since April 2018, lead developer Ben Nolan has been minting and selling a handful of parcels on Opensea every week or so, following no particular city layout design order while using procedural generation. The sales have generated enough revenue for Ben to self-fund the entire project to where he now has a small developer team helping him.
Cryptovoxels has also recently passed a million dollar marketcap, a milestone that's reminscent of geocities and the million dollar homepage. Congrats to the Cryptovoxels team and community for achieving this landmark!
Did you know there are multiple other programs to view Origin City with? One of the earliest examples is Substrata developed by Nick from Glare technologies. Nick, whom is close friends with Ben Nolan in real life, designed Substrata as a multi-user cyberspace written in C++. It can render the entire Cryptovoxels city on a machine with atleast 32gb of RAM.
There's also NeosVR, a free to download Metaverse engine that many describe as "multiplayer Unity" because of how people build and script worlds from inside the program instead of uploading content with a SDK. NeosVR is more complicated to use than VRChat and the desktop experience isn't fully realized yet, but the graphics are next level since the rendering engine is using the newer Unity 2019 and you can edit worlds live inside the client. To visit, download NeosVR from Steam and then search "Origin City" in the worlds menu or click this link to launch the world directly: http://cloudx.azurewebsites.net/open/world/U-jin/R-fec6fe2f-d6e9-43de-af37-31068a7ebcd9
AsyncArt, launched online in February 2020, innovates the NFT realm allowing creative people to showcase and trade programmable art. The first piece of such art ever tokenized on the platform is First Supper, a digital homage to Leonardo Da Vinci's Cenacolo.
First Supper, with 22 Layers, is the result of a collaboration between 13 major artists: Alotta Money, Blackboxdotart, Coldie, Connie Digital, Hackatao, Josie Bellini, Matt Kane, Mlibty, Rutger van der Tas, Shortcut, TwistedVacancy, VansDesign, and XCOPY. Auctioned on February 28th, the Master image was sold to MetaKovan for 103.4 ETH (14.037,58 USD). Among its Layers, purchased by different collectors shortly afterward, very successful were Coldie's Decentral Eyes, sold for 77.0 ETH (10.490,48 USD), and Visionary Spirit of Creation by Matt Kane, sold for 35.0 ETH (4.763,50 USD). A total of 263 ETH was made from the auction of 20 Layers.
The second programmable NFT auctioned on AsyncArt was XCOPY's Banksta. It was sold to the collector TokenAngels for 66.0 ETH (8.958,84 USD), becoming the most expensive work by a single artist to date. Its Master image sold for more than all its Layers combined, testifying how this particular art piece works better as a whole than others.
The Somnium Space team has a long history of working with other projects in the space to be more cross-compatible. Somnium Space has been a founding member of VR Blockchain Alliance, a working group aimed at numerous initiatives about interoperability, such as the transfer of digital assets across the metaverse.
Somnium Space designed a teleportation system that can transport a player between points in the world but also to *other* social VR platforms. This is quite a rarity to see in gaming since platforms tend to lock-in players from ever leaving. The transportation system established between Somnium Space, JanusVR, and High Fidelity is a great achievement to connect avatars into a more seamless Metaverse. See it in action between two native platforms below.
The Somnium Space team has been integrating third party NFTs like Cryptokitties in next level ways. For example, check out this Cryptokitty being imported into the builder then playing in VR.
The day before the big launch, Somnium Space and Cryptomotors showed off the results of an amazing collaboration. A limited run of the model Abyssus were auctioned on Opensea, with some being bought for 16 ETH ($2100 USD at the time).
Hi Conlan, what an incredible start for Async, you had a great response from collectors. So tell us, when did you come up with the idea and why?
Thank you so much. It's definitely been amazing reception so far. The concept behind Async Art came to me around November of 2019. I've been already involved with collecting Cryptoart and the Cryptovoxel community, so most of my day time musings were in that headspace already.
I think I was tying my shoelaces when the idea hit me. Create art that can be changed and different parts of it tokenized for different uses!
What is your background and who are the team members of Async?
I'm a game developer by trade. In my spare time I've built automation tools and Twitter bots for startups to gain a deeper understanding for their projects and in November have quit my day job to focus 100% on Async.
We have a small but passionate team. I met fellow co-founder Nate (n0shot) in Cryptovoxels and we became fast friends. He's been crucial in building our visual brand and overall creative vision for the platform.
Jeff and I met a while back while working on the first version of http://uniswap.info/ and he's done the frontend development for the website you see today.
Lisa leads all of our marketing including event setup, online communications and content creation.
How did you choose the first artists to get on board?
In my mind a new platform needs the right set of artists who can push the boundaries, are technically oriented, and have great community presence to educate our audience on this brand new concept.
I've collected art from and/or leased Cryptovoxels gallery space to all of the first group of artists before Async so I already had great relationships with them. It felt like asking friends to come together for a fun collaboration and in its essence, it really was. There is no Async Art without the artists.
We know that many artists want to join your platform now. What do they need to start collaborating with you?
First and foremost, they need to fill out an application form. This helps us keep track and also to check out their style of art. The most important question is probably "Your Idea for Async", in which we see what new concept they would want to explore with the platform. It's not about who has the most followers or have made the most sales, it is about pushing the boundaries and bringing something completely new to the Cryptoart landscape. Due to high demand and the manual nature of setting up an Async piece, we are onboarding artists in small batches. Eventually though, we aim to onboard everyone who wants to join.
Do you have any suggestions for new creatives in the crypto art realm in general?
Art on the blockchain is such a new and developing concept. The world is your oyster here. If you can think it, you should spend 100% of your available time exploring it.
Social media (especially Cent!) is your best friend here. Cryptoart community is open and welcoming so networking is important and will pay off.
You innovated the art scene enabling the creation of unprecedented artworks, as well as a new form of fractionated ownership. It is already a lot, but do you have new projects in store?
Oh tons! There's not enough hours in a day. However my main focus right now is in developing Async Art to its full potential, there are several new features and initiatives on the horizon and our team is excited to reveal more in the coming months.
Hi GoWest, it's a pleasure to interview one of the first NFT collectors, and arguably the most famous CryptoPunk collector ever.
I don’t know about that! There are some collections out there that are way more valuable than mine, but I think a lot of the old school CryptoPunk collectors like to keep a low profile.
Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
I live in Canada, and currently trade stocks and crypto full time. When not isolated in my home due to deadly viruses, I enjoy working out and golfing!
How did you get interested in NFTs and what NFT was the first one you got? Do you remember it? Is it still meaningful to you?
I first came across NFTs when CryptoKitties launched in November 2017. I was lucky enough to be aware of the project while it was still in beta testing, so when it went public, I snatched up a founder cat which I was able to flip for quite a profit, a few days later. I was the first person to ever buy a founder and that was my first NFT! It will always hold a special place in my heart, even if it’s no longer in my possession.
Talking about CryptoPunks, how many of them have you collected and traded so far? Why did you got so fascinated by them and why do you find them a valuable asset to have in your collection?
I have well over 100 CryptoPunks and I’ve only ever sold one or two. I totally missed the boat in June 2017 when they were given away for free, but after getting back into NFTs in the fall of 2018, I quickly became interested in them for their collectible value. CryptoPunks were the first Ethereum-based NFT, so from that perspective, I believe they should be a part of any serious NFT collection.
At the moment you own three very special Punks, and you had to invest a lot to buy them. Can you explain to those unfamiliar with CPs why you collected them and what makes each of them so particular?
Sure! #8348 is the only CryptoPunk with seven traits, and he just looks bad-ass! He is by far my favourite CryptoPunk and I was thrilled when he came up for sale.
#5314 is an ape, which is one of three types of special CryptoPunks (aliens, apes, and zombies). That was a bit of an expensive acquisition but apes are very hard to come by, since there are only 24 of them.
#1 is valuable to me for obvious reasons. Unfortunately there’s a CryptoPunk #0 so I don’t own the first one, but he is the first male CryptoPunk, and obviously a very low number. Coming from the world of CryptoKitties where low-numbered cats are more valuable just for that reason, it seemed obvious to me that CryptoPunk #1 was highly collectible, so I snatched it up when I saw it was for sale.
We might know the answer, but is there any other Punk you wish to collect in the future? Are there any character traits you are particularly fond of?
I’d obviously love to own an alien, but no one’s selling. There are only nine aliens in total and they’re in strong hands! As far as traits go, I’ve collected quite a few beanies, because they’re the rarest trait. I’m also a fan of medical masks just because of how relevant they are, given what we’re going through in the world right now. It’s kind of strange that LarvaLabs even included medical masks as a trait for punks, but they obviously saw the future.
Any tips you wish to give new NFT collectors? Anything that worries you in the NFT realms and you'd advise people to be careful with?
If you’re a new collector, take your time to learn about a project before you make an investment. You’ll save a lot of money if you get to know other collectors and deal with them privately. The prices you see on the market are often highly exaggerated; think of NFTs like art - it’s not a fast moving market like a cryptocurrency market.
Thanks for the precious advices! Any other projects you are particularly fond of right now?
Most of my attention outside of CryptoPunks has been on CryptoKitties, metaverses (CryptoVoxels and Decentraland), and CryptoStamps. I also own a complete collection of Autoglyphs, which is on-chain generative art that was created by LarvaLabs, the same team that created CryptoPunks. There are so many other interesting projects out there, but I’ve only got so much time (and money)! I also have some digital art, from various artists like Josie (one of the originals), and JoyWorld.