Der SpiegelDer Spiegel

The crypto art crash: what remains of the NFT hype

By Carola Padtberg

04 Nov 2022 · 8 min read

Editor's Note

Crypto technology caused a boom in sales of digital artworks, but two years later investors are losing millions as the market implodes. Der Spiegel argues that there could still be value in the NFT.

"What a strange day," says Damien Hirst. As the art fair Frieze London gets underway, the artist is wearing silver-colored overalls and gloves made of fireproof material. You could almost mistake him for an astronaut. "It's kind of crazy to burn art," Hirst tells the journalists gathered in his gallery.

Then he takes a picture, roughly the size of a sheet of paper, from a stack with colorful dots on it, opens the glass hood of a fireplace, and then throws the work into the fire. Hundreds more unique pieces signed by Hirst will follow that day. By the end of the month, 4,851 images will have been incinerated.

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