Following the large bitcoin and cryptocurrency price surge in 2020, the crypto ecosystem has had a major transformation in the past year. Additionally, the crypto community became interested in the expanding demand for NFTs due to growth in market capitalization and infrastructure development.
NFTs are cryptographic tokens that serve as unique identifiers for a specific asset. They can be used for representing digital assets, such as photographs, as well as tracking real-world assets such as houses or artwork.
Due to the exponential growth of the NFT sector and the obsession with the Metaverse, it’s no surprise to see digital artists minting anything into NFTs now. And with the blockchain making waves in the digital landscapes and NFTs being in the news every day, let’s take a look at the most expensive NFTs ever sold!
- The Merge
The Merge is the brainchild of legendary digital artist Pak. One of the big names in the NFT realm, Pak has created some of the most iconic arts in the world, with The Merge being the most famous.
The Merge became the most expensive NFT when it was auctioned for $91.8 million on December 2, 2021. There were over 30,000 bidders in this auction hoping to win this NFT.
Among all the pieces The Pak has created, The Merge, which was fractionalized into 320,686 pieces, was the only art piece that consisted of a collection of “masses” that users could purchase.
So if you are wondering who owns the most expensive NFT? Among the most expensive NFT art ever sold on this list, this is the only one with multiple owners, one of which is Akira who is the founder of NarcissusGLRY.
- Beeple, Everydays: The first 5000 Days
Another mass collection, Beeple, sold for a record-breaking sum of 69 million dollars in its first-ever digital art auction. Prior to Merge taking over, Everydays was the most expensive NFT ever sold. As a result of the snowball effect Everydays the first 5000 days created, NFT has been adopted by households all over the world.
This Beeple NFT was auctioned by Christie, known for selling NFT art, has a range of media, styles, and content that entrails satirical and dystopian themes. Prior to Everydays the first 5000 days, Beeple had already sold other six-figure artworks, such as Crossroads.
If you’re familiar with the controversy surrounding Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, you must have heard his name often. Originally released in February 2022, Clock was created by Julian Assange and Pak to raise funds for the defense of Assange.
Designed to display the number of days Assange has spent in prison, the piece was sold for $52.2 million and was purchased by AssangeDAO. More than ten thousand people contributed their money to buy this NFT in support of this polemical figure.
- Beeple – Human One
Mike Winkelmann, better known as Beeple, sold a dynamic, life-generative sculpture made up of a combination of physical elements to crypto billionaire Ryan Zuro for over $28.9 million on November 9, 2021.
The sculpture is made up of polished metal, mahogany wood, and four video displays that have an overall resolution of 16K.
- CryptoPunk – #5822
Started in 2017 CryptoPunks are known for creating NFT collectibles that feature uniquely generated characters, but one collection, #5822, which is the most popular NFT and exceeded all expectations when it was sold for $23.7 million on February 12, 2022.
The #5822 skin is a part of the Alien skin which is, one of the rarest skin available (0.09 percent chance). Due to its extraordinary amount of rare qualities, this CryptoPunk NFT price is insanely high.
The punk was purchased by Deepak Thapliyal, who is an executive at blockchain startup Chain, known for collecting NFTs like this.
- Ocean Front
A tribute to the global fight against climate change, Beeple sold this NFT titled “Ocean Front” for $6 million to Justin Sun, who is the founder of Tron Blockchain.
This NFT was part of The Carbon Drop and included eight carbon-negative NFTs inspired by Earth and climate change crises. Open Earth Foundation, a non-profit organization for building planetary resilience and building a human-earth balanced global economy, launched this NFT to raise awareness about climate change among digital artists.
- Stay Free
A second NFT around the controversial figure, but this time one focused on Edward Snowden, a whistleblower from the NSA, appears in an NFT sold for $5.44 million.
This NFT commemorates Snowden’s exploits of mass surveillance when he exposed the NSA in 2013. It consists of court documents of Snowden’s court case as well as his Platon portrait.
Although Edward Snowden is featured in the NFT, the profit will be donated to the Freedom of Press Foundation, which Snowden chairs.
- Save Thousands of Lives
Launched by Noora Health, a nonprofit working in south Asia to teach new mothers how to take care of their newborn babies once they get home, Save Thousand of Lives was sold for $5.1 million.
According to the nonprofit, nine lives could be saved in every 1,000 births at a cost of $1,235 per life saved. More than 18,000 collectors bid for the NFT, but Paul Graham ended up becoming its ultimate owner.
If you are new to the ever-evolving NFT and crypto Industry you will be surprised to know someone paid around 1,696.9 ETH or approximately $4 million for a meme NFT.
Sold in June 2021, the bid was won by an account named ‘pleaserDAO’ on the auction site Zora. NFT was originally run for three days by Atsuko Sato, the owner of Kabosu the dog you see in the NFT, before it was sold to ‘pleaserdao’.
It’s no secret that NFTs are becoming more popular over time, but this raises the question: what is their price ceiling?
It goes without saying that if you invest your money in the right projects and wait long enough, you’ll probably end up with a fortune enough to party your whole life.
The advent of NFTs will also bring with it a new form of art patronage in addition to individual profits. By using blockchain technology, fans and collectors will be able to support their favorite artist directly, without having to go through a third-party intermediary.