Christie’s has launched a new on-chain Ethereum NFT marketplace called Christie’s 3.0.
The auction house previously hosted notable NFT auctions, including the $69.3 million sale of artwork from Beeple.
Christie’s has already made a big splash in the NFT space, most notably auctioning Beeple’s “Everydays: The First 5,000 Days” artwork for $69.3 million in March 2021. The storied auction house is now fully embracing Web3’s decentralized ethos by launching a new marketplace in which auctions take place on the public Ethereum blockchain.
Launched today, the Christie’s 3.0 marketplace is built so that transactions are recorded in full on the Ethereum blockchain. The 256-year-old auction house says it will also provide tools for compliance and tax purposes.
The new Christie’s platform was created in collaboration with Manifold, a startup focused on smart contracts, or the code that powers NFTs and other decentralized apps. Christie’s has also partnered with blockchain analytics firm Chainalysis and metaverse platform Spatial to enable additional functionality for its marketplace.
While some previous Christie’s NFT auctions have grabbed headlines, the actual transactions were not typically conducted on-chain—a process that provides transparency regarding the wallets involved and the flow of payments. Christie’s 3.0 reshapes that approach with on-chain transactions more akin to those from marketplaces like OpenSea and Rarible.
Nicole Sales Giles, director of digital art sales at Christie’s, commented in a news release that the new marketplace would “offer the public the opportunity to collect exceptional NFTs in the way they are meant to be transacted, on-chain.”
However, Christie’s will continue its emphasis on curation rather than allowing anyone to list their artwork or collectibles. For the launch of the marketplace, Christie’s is offering just one exclusive project: a collection of nine NFTs from Diana Sinclair, a multidisciplinary artist.
Sotheby’s, the chief rival to Christie’s in the high-end auction space, is also deeply entrenched in the NFT world: the auction house launched its Sotheby’s Metaverse NFT marketplace last October and has hosted its own high-profile real-world NFT auctions, as well.
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