Legendary painter, sculptor and printmaker Frank Stella is selling a set of NFTs that come with everything buyers need to 3D print one or more of the artist’s digital sculptures. The sale will be conducted through the Artist Rights Society’s (ARS) new digital platform, Arsnl. It opens today, September 22, at 10 a.m. EDT.
Stella is one of the most highly regarded and historically important artists working today. He first came to prominence in the late 50s with his series of “Black Paintings”, a series of massive canvases decorated with black and white minimalist designs. Moving from painting to sculpture over the next few decades, Stella was one of the earliest artists to adopt digital tools like CAD to design sculptures for the physical world.
The presented series, “Geometric,” is the culmination of a thirty-year dialogue with computation and a sixty-year exploration of painting and physical space. The series contains 22 three-dimensional shapes rendered in white. Arsnl will sell 100 editions of 20 of the designs, which can be viewed at arsnl.art, with a starting price of $1000 for each edition. Two additional molds will be gifted to buyers who purchase an entire set.
Upon purchase, buyers will receive the NFT, which confirms that you are the owner of the Geometry, as well as the file for the artwork in various formats, including JPG and MP4 for image and video viewing or display, SLS for 3D printing, CAP for model manipulation or use in virtual reality, and USDZ for Augmented Reality viewing. Purchase also comes with the right to 3D print the Geometry – presumably at any scale and from any 3D printable material – and use it to create derivative works.
Founded in 1987, ARS is the preeminent copyright, licensing, and monitoring organization for visual artists in the United States. It represents the intellectual property rights interests of more than 122,000 painters, sculptors, photographers, architects and other visual artists and estates of visual artists around the world, with members past and present including Andy Warhol, Chloe Wise, Elizabeth Colomba, Frida Kahlo include. , Georgia O’Keeffe, Jenny Holzer, Pablo Picasso, Kenny Scharf and Mickalene Thomas, among others.
Arsnl is a new digital platform that guides artists and institutions through the creation of digital projects and ambitious artworks on the blockchain. ARS Vice President Katarina Feder founded Arsnl to provide technical and legal expertise to artists as they navigate the complex processes of NFT coin, promotion and licensing of their intellectual property on the blockchain. Upcoming projects include drops of NFTs from vanguard artists including Leonora Carrington, LeRoy Neiman, and a collaboration between the Quilters of Gee’s Bend and generative artist Anna Lucia.
For those unfamiliar with the technology, NFTs (non-fungible tokens) are digital assets whose ownership is recorded on a decentralized digital ledger called the blockchain, the same technology that powers cryptocurrency. While many of the most famous (and profitable) NFTs are intertwined with subversive culture, in the art world NFTs are typically used in two ways: NFTs can be attached to assets stored off the blockchain, including digital assets, such as a graphic or audio file, and items in the physical world – a painting or sculpture, car or bottle of whiskey – to verify their authenticity. Alternatively, they can be linked to assets stored entirely on the blockchain, such as the popular Cryptopunks or Art Blocks.
For both creators and collectors of digital art, NFTs and blockchain technology have been monumental. Creators can now, theoretically, be compensated similarly to traditional artists. And, like traditional art, the ability to verify authenticity has created an incredibly profitable market for the secondary sale of NFTs. A recent note published by Jefferies forecasts the NFT market cap at more than $35 billion by 2022, rising to more than $80 billion by 2025.
But a long-standing problem, for digital and traditional art alike, is that secondary sales of art almost never benefit the artists who created them. History is replete with stories of famous artists who have died, while the post-humous sale of their art at auction has created millions of dollars in wealth.
Arsnl aims to shift this dynamic. Geometries, for example, includes a 10% resale fee attached to each secondary sale for the benefit of the artist, with other fees attached to the sale of any derivative works, such as physical prints.
“The vision for Arsnl is to carry the Artist Rights Society ethos of protection and promotion into the NFT and digital art space,” said Katarina Feder, Arsnl Founder and CEO and a Vice President and Director of Business Development for ARS. “Arsnl will guide artists and partners through the creation of digital projects and artworks on the blockchain – while also championing artist-first policies, including built-in royalties and resale rights.”
Sale of the NFTs opens today, Sept. 22, at arsnl.art.