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Damien Hirst chooses NFTs, will burn all 1,000 of his physical ‘Currency’ art pieces


Damien Hirst’s NFT project, Currency, is made up of 10,000 unique art pieces made up of colored spots on an A4 sheet of paper. The artwork is signed, numbered, and includes a hologram watermark similar to a banknote to prevent forgery.

In an exciting spin, Hirst decided that owners would have the choice to either keep the NFT or trade it in for the physical version; no one would be able to keep both. Hirst told the Financial Times,

“Yes, I’m forcing people to make a choice. But the purchaser always has a choice. It’s not just ‘Where’s the value?’ It’s also ‘Where’s the joy?”

Hirst revealed in a Tweet on Wednesday evening that “the final numbers are 5,149 physical and 4,851 NFTs,” meaning 4,851 Damien Hirst signed physical art pieces will now be burned and gone forever.

Hirst had a decision to make on his collection of 1,000 Currency pieces. He stated, “in the beginning I had thought I would definitely choose all physical… Then I thought half- half and then I felt I had to keep all my 1,000 as NFTs.” He relayed the struggle he faced moving into the NFT space.

Seemingly bullish on the future of NFTs and digital artwork, he continued,

“I believe in art and art in all its forms but in the end I thought fuck it! this zone is so fucking exciting and the one I know least about and I love this NFT community it blows my mind.”

The artist commended the NFT community, comparing it to the “bollox” he has seen in the physical art world over the years.

Hirst, who has dominated the UK art scene since the 1990s with artwork selling for millions of dollars throughout his career with exhibitions in the world’s top art galleries, remarked that he has “learnt so much” in the year he has been involved in this NFT project.

The community response on Twitter was overwhelmingly positive, with collectors asking for the burning to be preserved as an NFT and declaring it “the most legitimate innovative integration of tradart and crypto.”

Hirst kept the door open to future NFT projects noting; I feel the journey is just beginning.”

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