Museums are seeking new revenue streams after a 40%-90% drop in the last few years.
The British Museum is about to launch its second NFT art sale. This is part of a growing trend amongst museums keen to make up on lost revenue through the pandemic
The February Turner NFT sale represents another NFT revenue generating opportunity for the museum. The recent, September 2021, Hokusai (think Japanese - waves) auction is thought to have generated modest sums, but it still demonstrated the value that could be derived from the museum’s assets.
The British Museum will auction 20 NFTs featuring Turner’s paintings from a 1950’s gift, including “A Storm (or Shipwreck)” and “The Colosseum, Rome.” These are rare pictures indeed because the terms of the gift are such that they can only be displayed for two weeks each year in February!
Image courtesy of LaCollection
Here’s the thing: does a digital representation of this art comply with the original ‘terms’ under which they were gifted to the museum?
The original terms of the gift specified that these paintings could not be loaned, and could only be displayed for two weeks in February or by special request.
A little bit like copyright and NFTs you have to read the small print to understand what ‘license’ conditions apply to your NFT acquisition and hence what you can and can’t do by way of reproduction, how many copies, reprint and even on sale. Cleverly the museum has inserted a clause so that they benefit to the tune of 10% of any secondary market sales.
On February 9, LaCollection will commence its public sale of the NFTs in three scarcity levels from between £700 to £4000.
The Fighting Temeraire is not included in the British Museum sale making it of course the Non Fighting Temeraire (or NFT for short).
It remains to be seen whether the National (Fungible) Gallery will do something similar with their Turners.
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