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Popular Auction House to Accept Crypto Payments for a $70 Million Basquiat Painting

basquiat Cryptocurrency

On May 18, Phillips will hold an evening auction honouring the work of American artist Jean-Michel Basquiat. The “Untitled, 1982” painting by Jean-Michel Basquiat will be auctioned off at Phillips’ Evening Sale of 20th Century & Contemporary Art for an estimated $70 million. Phillips has disclosed that the auction would take ethereum or bitcoin for the artwork, according to the release.

On May 18, famous art collector Yusaku Maezawa and the 225-year-old auction house Phillips will hold an art auction including Jean-Michel Basquiat’s work. The American artist is well-known in the neo-expressionist movement and has been likened to Pablo Picasso, the Spanish painter who co-founded the Cubist art movement.

Basquiat’s sixteen-foot-wide “Untitled, 1982” artwork will be included at the Evening Sale of 20th Century & Contemporary Art. According to Phillips, the “Untitled, 1982,” which stands eight feet tall and more than 16 feet broad, is worth over $70 million.

The “Untitled 1982” Painting

“This stunning horizontal format is very certainly a homage to Pablo Picasso’s classic ‘Guernica,'” according to the Phillips release. “I hope Untitled continues its fantastic voyage in excellent hands and brings joy to many people all across the world,” stated the painting’s consignor, Yusaku Maezawa.

The notice goes on to say that the auction house will accept bitcoins as payment for the Basquiat artwork. “Phillips is delighted to announce that the auction house would take cryptocurrencies for the task, in either ethereum or bitcoin,” the company said in a statement.

Phillips previous experiences with Cryptocurrency 

The Basquiat now accepts bitcoin and ethereum payments, which is not the first time Phillips has explored crypto solutions and non-fungible token (NFT) technology. Phillips announced last year that it will be auctioning off a world-famous piece of artwork known as the “Laugh Now Panel” produced by the unknown street artist Banksy.

The Banksy “Laugh Now Panel” sale was the company’s first time selling artwork in a physical art auction for cryptocurrency payments. During the same week as the Phillips Banksy auction announcement, Sotheby’s said that it will use the cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase to sell Banksy’s “Love is in the Air” artwork.

Phillips recently sponsored the “My Kawaii Valentine Online Auction” for Valentine’s Day 2022, which included the first auction data-generative NFT made by a virtual person. “Among the NFTs for sale is Drowning in Love, the world’s first NFT produced by the virtual artist, Monoc, utilising real-time auction data,” Phillips said on February 8.

Phillips said the Basquiat work will go on an international tour before the auction, including stops in London, Los Angeles, and Taipei. Following the exhibitions, the artwork will be auctioned off at 432 Park Avenue, Phillips’ New York headquarters.

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