Shepard Fairey, the artist behind Former President Barack Obama’s iconic “Hope” campaign poster, is selling an NFT.
It’s attached to a digital image called “Obey Ideal Power,” and is set to be auctioned off on the marketplace SuperRare.
As blockchain utopians and art-world grifters have shoveled coal into the engine of NFT Hype, creators of all kinds have been jumping aboard, auctioning off GIFs and audio files for huge amounts of money.
And with the frenzy has come a multi-pronged backlash.
What about NFTs’ ecological footprint? Aren’t there copyright issues involved here? What about the exclusivity problem—isn’t this stuff only accessible to crypto nerds with built-in audiences? How do we know NFTs aren’t just a vehicle for money laundering?
And wait: the JPEG I just bought for $69 million doesn’t actually live forever on the blockchain?
As skepticism mounts, artists have been packaging new NFT announcements with climate offsets and other charitable components. Aphex Twin said he’d use the money from his recent NFT sale to plant trees, and the NFT marketplace Nifty Gateway plans to put money toward forest conservation efforts in Peru.
For his part, Fairey has vowed he’ll donate “a portion of the proceeds” from the sale to Amnesty International.
“Obey Ideal Power” is part of a collaboration between SuperRare and a company called Verisart, which provides ownership certificates for blockchain-based assets. The piece is up for auction on March 29.