A painted portrait of the Fyre Media logo held by rapper Ja Rule sold at auction Tuesday for $122,000 through the rapper’s new exchange venture, Flipkick, which focuses on NFT sales.
Ja Rule said he bought the 48-inch-by-60-inch, oil-paint portrait of the festival’s corporate logo for $2,000 and had kept it in his home since the company’s Manhattan headquarters closed following the disastrous Fyre Festival in 2017, Forbes reported.
NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, are typically digital or virtual items – music, artwork, video game powers – accompanied by blockchain ownership records, but can also include real-life items with digital ledger entries.
Unlike cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum, NFTs are non-fungible, meaning one cannot be exchanged for another.
NFTs are unique digital assets encrypted with each creator’s signature authenticating its originality. NFTs created by famous artists and musicians have become coveted collector’s items during a recent popularity explosion.
Ja Rule at the premieres of ‘Growing Up Hip Hop New York’ and ‘Untold Stories of Hip Hop’ in New York City on August 19, 2019. The rapper has sold his painting of the Fyre Festival logo as a NFT for $122,000
Ja Rule’s Twitter post announcing the sale of his NFT of the Fyre Media logo created by artist Tripp Derrick Barnes
Ja Rule used social media to promote the sale as an example of the art available on his NFT exchange Flipkick
Flipkick offers established and up-and-coming artists, and valuable art holders, the opportunity to monetize their work with non-fungible tokens.
The Fyre NFT, with a logo created by artist Tripp Derrick Barnes, included a note from Ja Rule saying, ‘F—k this painting,’ while an autograph was also available upon request, Complex reported.
‘I just wanted that energy out,’ Ja Rule said, noting the bad vibes he believed the image had cast inside his New Jersey mansion.
The Fyre Festival was billed as a luxury music festival with glamorous accommodations and top talent, but guests arrived to find a shambolic setup on the island of Great Exuma in the Bahamas in April 2017, The New York Times reported.
Billy McFarland pleaded guilty to two counts of wire fraud after investigators said he defrauded investors in his company, Fyre Media, and a subsidiary that promoted the music festival, resulting in $24 million in losses.
Ja Rule, left, helped Billy McFarland, right, promote a luxury music festival on a private island in the Bahamas featuring bikini-clad supermodels, A-List musical performances and posh amenities, but guests arrived to discover the reality was far short of the promises
Prosecutors said McFarland raised more than $1 million for the festival in the Bahamas, with would-be concertgoers dropping between $1,200 and $100,000 only to be forced to sleep in tents or on the beach instead of the luxury accommodations McFarland advertised
Some Fyre Festival revelers in April 2017 likened the festival camping ground to a refugee camp
Ja Rule, who helped promote the festival through social media, was cleared by a judge in 2019 of any legal wrongdoing. He also avoided a $100 million class-action lawsuit against McFarland and others involved in the botched event.
While NFTs have been around for years, their popularity has grown rapidly thanks to a few sales with high price tags.
In February, NFTs generated $45.2 million in sales while grabbing attention from top investors including billionaire entrepreneur Mark Cuban.
Painter Tripp Derrick Barnes created the Fyre logo that Ja Rule has sold as a NFT for $122,000
A photo released by Christie’s auction house on March 11 shows a digital collage titled ‘Everydays: The First 5,000 Days,’ by an artist named Beeple, whose real name is Mike Winkelmann. The artwork was sold for $69.4 million in an online auction of digital artwork
An artist named Pest Supply netted more than $1 million auctioning his NFTs featuring Banksy-style graffiti, including a piece that sold for 60 Ethereum coins (ETH), or about $100,000.
On February 19, a one-of-a-kind digital rendition of the Nyan Cat meme sold for 300 ETH, or about $590,000, in an online auction.
On February 22, a man paid $208,000 for a NFT with a clip of LeBron James dunking through an auction by NBA Top Shot, which mints basketball highlights into NFTs.
And on March 11, programmer Vignesh Sundaresan paid $69.3million for the rights to digital artist Beeple’s ‘Everydays: The First 5000 Days’.
Bidding for the virtual collage of 5,000 images – the first purely digital NFT-based artwork ever sold by a major auction house – had started at $100 before the price skyrocketed at Christie’s.
Stevie Nicks blocked TikTok star Nathan Apodaca, also known as 420doggface208, from using Fleetwood Mac’s song ‘Dreams’ to sell his viral video clip as a NFT.
The 38-year-old internet personality expected bidding to start at $500,000, but the 72-year-old singer and songwriter shot down the idea.
Apodaca’s representative told TMZ that their team offered 50 percent of the sale to Nicks, who wrote the Fleetwood Mac hit, but she declined despite a tripling of Fleetwood Mac music sales after the appearance of the the viral video, which showed Apodaca lip-syncing to ‘Dreams’ while skateboarding and drinking cranberry juice.
Nathan Apodaca, also known as 420doggface208, became a TikTok star with a viral video clip featuring the Fleetwood Mac song ‘Dreams’ and planned to sell the clip as a NFT with bidding starting at $500,000
Stevie Nicks arrives at the 60th Annual GRAMMY Awards in New York City on January 26, 2018. The Fleetwood Mac singer, who penned the song ‘Dreams,’ blocked Apodaca from selling is viral clip despite the TikTok post helping boost Fleetwood Mac music sales after its release
What are NFTs?
What is a NFT?
A Non-Fungible Token (NFT) is a unique digital token encrypted with an artist’s signature and which verifies its ownership and authenticity and is permanently attached to the piece.
What do they look like?
Most NFTs include some kind digital artwork, such as photos, videos, GIFs, and music. Theoretically, anything digital could be turned into a NFT.
Where do you buy them?
At the moment, NFTs are most commonly sold in so-called ‘drops’, timed online sales by blockchain-backed marketplaces like Nifty Gateway, Opensea and Rarible.
Why would I want to own one?
There’s an array of reasons why someone may want to buy a NFT. For some, the reason may be emotional value, because NFTs are seen as collectors items. For others, they are seen as an investment opportunity similar to cryptocurrencies, because the value could increase.
When were NFTs created?
Writer and podcaster Andrew Steinwold traced the origins of NFTs back to 2012, with the creation of the Colored Coins cryptocurrency. But NFTs didn’t move into the mainstream until five years later, when the blockchain game CryptoKitties began selling virtual cats in 2017.