World masterpieces will receive digital copies – The State Hermitage and one of the largest crypto-exchanges, Binance, have agreed to create and release tokenized works (based on non-fungible tokens – Non-Fungible Token, NFT) from the museum’s collections. The works will be available at the end of August. In Russia, cryptocurrencies are almost completely banned, and the circulation of other types of tokens is very limited. However, lawyers have developed a model that fully complies with the legislation, which will allow integrating the Russian market into the international circulation of NFT.
As part of the first project in this area, the museum will release a limited edition NFT with digital copies of masterpieces from its collection. The series of works consists: “Madonna Lita” by Leonardo da Vinci, “Judith” by Giorgione, “Lilac Bush” by Vincent Van Gogh, “Composition VI” by Wassily Kandinsky, “Corner of the Garden at Montgeron” by Claude Monet. For each painting, two copies of NFT were created: one of them will be stored in the Hermitage, and the second is presented on the Binance marketplace, sales on which will be carried out in the format of an auction.
All proceeds from the sale are transferred to the State Hermitage Museum. Any Binance user can participate in the auction.
Each digital copy is personally signed by the general director of the museum, Mikhail Piotrovsky. He assured the authenticity of a limited series of works and created an independent work by applying his signature, date and exact time of signing, thereby giving them absolute uniqueness. The place of signing – the Hermitage building itself – is also fixed in the metadata.
The recognition of blockchain technology and NFT as one of the largest museums in the world is another step towards global digitalization” – said Helen High, head of Binance NFT.
“New technologies, in particular blockchain, have opened a new chapter in the development of the art market, at the head of which is the possession and the guarantee of this possession,” said Mikhail Piotrovsky, General Director of the Hermitage. “NFT is a way that gives democracy, makes luxury more affordable, but at the same time exceptional and exclusive,” he said.
Non-fungible tokens provide the assurance that the buyer is the sole owner of a specific copy and give the feeling of owning a unique digital work created once. The NFT tokens created by the Hermitage will be presented at the NFT art exhibition, which will be held at the museum in autumn.
Today, cryptocurrencies are almost completely banned in Russia, and the circulation of other types of tokens is very limited. The Legal Service of the Hermitage, together with the legal consulting company LFCS, have developed a model for the creation and sale of NFT, which fully complies with Russian legislation. Thus, an important precedent has been created that will allow integrating the Russian market into the international turnover of NFT.