by R.A. Rowell
In 2017, Thomas Hunt, also known as “Mad Bitcoins,” launched his blockchain collectibles project, Curio Cards. These limited edition blockchain collectibles followed the success of blockchain trading card game Spells of Genesis and Rare Pepe blockchain trading cards based on the meme Pepe the Frog (today it’s Rare Pepe Wallet). In 2019, Curio Cards are still being created and released - often limited to under 1000 copies, and sometimes limited to even just 200 to 400 copies each.RSS Feed
The creator of the digital trading cards project has long been himself a collector. Per the CurioCards website, he created this platform for artists and collectors that actually benefits artists. At the time, Curio Cards were very innovative, as these were among the very first ERC20 tokens purposely created to be limited edition and provably rare. Best of all, the entire chain of custody of each individual token is easily verified. Since then, there have been many collectibles created in this way, but Curio Cards was a pioneer in blockchain collectibles
Thomas Hunt was correct that blockchain collectibles would grow. The launch of the Enjin Marketplace, backed by the Enjin Coin and the Unity 3D powered games that use the related ERC20 tokens - has certainly helped Ethereum-based blockchain collectibles. But, other crypto collectibles marketplaces such as OpenSea and Rare Bits already existed. There’s definitely a healthy market for blockchain collectibles and it’s only growing.
Rare digital art has become a reality thanks to blockchain technology. But, so far, the trick is not only selling the initial offerings, but then creating a stable market afterwards. When new blockchain collectibles hit the market, hype usually causes a bunch to sell quickly, but the market quickly wanes afterward. Most recently, the most traded items are blockchain trading cards and collectibles that can be used in popular blockchain games.
So, the question facing the blockchain collectibles market for static items like digital art has been this: “How do we create or find new audiences to buy blockchain art?” The good news is that this question has a potential good answer. There seem to be a new wave of savvy investors who aren’t only into cryptocurrency itself, but also the tokens related to digital art and gaming projects, as well as the art and collectibles themselves. Of course, the tokens that investors are most interested in are those used in popular blockchain games, such as the trading cards in Gods Unchained.
However, people do like digital art. From an investment standpoint, because of the extremely limited nature of many of these blockchain collectibles, the scarcity creates opportnity, Of course, traditional art is seen as a valuable asset class. With digital art stored on the blockchain, pieces are still able to be enjoyed by the masses, but the holder of the token has true ownership. Also, blockchain collectibles can’t be counterfeited, a major drawback of traditional art. Who doesn’t want ot invest in something that’s counterfeit-proof and far less expensive than the traditional counterpart? Plus, it can’t easily be stolen and chain of custody is easily verified - so you know exactly where it’s been.
Also, for investors who don’t have a place to safely and securely store art, digital blockchain art is the perfect alternative. Best of all, artists get to benefit more than ever, since they can literally create art at will. The artists still retain their rights to the intellectual property and can issue “reprints” if they wish, since the originals are still proven originals as unique tokens..
Curio Cards will likely be one of a few current blockchain collectibles that will benefit from a new wave of blockchain collectible investors. The question isn’t if it will happen, it’s all a matter of when. When more people realize that they can own a piece of fine art that is a great place to store value just as with traditional artwork - but that can be easily bought and sold digitally - the digital art community will forever be transformed.
What do you think of the future of digital art as blockchain collectibles?
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R.A. Rowell is a collectibles enthusiast who comes from a long history of collecting trading cards in both sports and in Trading Card Games. He is passionate about educating the world about the future promise and benefits of digital collectibles, both on the blockchain and off.