In collaboration with artèQ, a new art NFT investment fund, the Belvedere museum is launching an NFT drop of a historical masterpiece. Gustav Klimt’s The Kiss (Lovers) – one of the world’s most famous works of art and the centerpiece of the Belvedere’s collection – will be specially transformed into an NFT project. A high-resolution digital copy will be divided into a 100 x 100 grid, resulting in 10,000 inimitable individual pieces that will be offered as non-fungible tokens, or NFTs.
The buying process begins with a “whitelisting” phase on January 25 at midnight Central European Time, when interested parties can register to purchase on the thekiss.art platform. On February 9, buyers will receive authorization to purchase minted NFTs of a piece of the digital Kiss. Minting is an imprinting process through which digital art becomes part of the blockchain – this guarantees that each NFT is unalterable and forgery-proof. On February 9, buyers can complete the transaction using either the cryptocurrency Ethereum, a credit card or EPS Online Payment. Each NFT will be approximately Euro 1,850, depending on the value of Ethereum on the day. The 10,000 segments of the work will be allocated at random. The drop, or official release of the NFTs, will take place by Valentine’s Day, February 14.
The issued NFT certificates will show exactly which digital part of the painting was purchased. The unrestricted whitelist allows payment in crypto or fiat, such as a credit card. If The Kiss sale is oversubscribed, allocation of the 10,000 NFTs will be decided by lottery and those not selected will automatically be put at the top of the whitelist for the next masterpiece launched by artèQ . One NFT will also be given away by arteQ with details released on their social channels throughout the whitelisting period.
In addition to purchasing the NFT, buyers can register as owners of their piece on the platform thekiss.art, where the picture can be viewed in its entirety. This entry can also serve as a declaration of love – just in time for Valentine’s Day. An individual dedication of love can be added to the NFT via the thekiss.art platform and will be visible on thekiss.art site from 14 February. The NFTs can be resold via any commercially available NFT sales platform.
“What does it mean to own a work of art in the digital age? The rise of NFTs, which has preoccupied the art world since 2020, has given fresh impetus to this intriguing question. The conversion of digital reproductions into virtual originals opens up new forms of participation, which, in financial terms, should be taken seriously, yet can also be viewed playfully,” says Belvedere General Director Stella Rollig about the drop.
Love declarations aside, the Belvedere expects a high level of interest from NFT collectors: “The very small number of shares for the world market and the fact that each piece is unique is what makes these tokens so valuable,” says Wolfgang Bergmann, Chief Financial Officer of the Belvedere.
Farbod Sadeghian, founder of artèQ, added: “We are proud that artèQ’s innovative technology and concept was chosen for the implementation of this globally unique project and that we were allowed to become a partner of the project. We look forward to the creation of our own metaverse gallery, metaQ, where we users will be able to view and purchase a range of fine art NFT, for which TheKiss is a worthy curtain raiser.”
About the Belvedere
Austrian art is presented in an international context at three locations of the Belvedere Musuem in Vienna. The Baroque complex of the Upper and Lower Belvedere and its garden is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Its renowned art collection includes works ranging from the Middle Ages to the present day. And with 24 paintings by Gustav Klimt, the Belvedere possesses the world’s largest collection of his paintings. Other highlights include prominent works from the Viennese Biedermeier period, the Austrian Baroque, Vienna around 1900, and French Impressionism. Continued development and digitization in all areas will ensure the Belvedere’s status as an outstanding museum in the future as well.
artèQ, a venture by the Donau-Finanz Group, is an NFT investment fund with its own token , available on all common market platforms, whose aim is to unite innovation, technology, and art. The platform brings artists, art collectors, and investors closer to digital art using the safest technology available. Via artèQ Auction House, a powerful online platform that uses the latest technology in an exclusive virtual environment, works of art are traded all over the world – in various auction houses or directly with museums and galleries. With its international team of specialists in technology, finance, and the arts, artèQ not only guarantees professional support but also constant adaptation to the latest developments in the blockchain market.
Gustav Klimt, The Kiss (Lovers), 1908/09
The couple in The Kiss appear intimately entangled, oblivious to their surroundings and lost in their embrace. With this work at the height of his “Golden Period,” Austrian painter Gustav Klimt created a universal allegorical statement about love as a central theme of human existence. The Austrian state bought the work when it was first presented, in 1908, for the recently founded Modern Gallery in the Lower Belvedere. Since then, the painting has remained in the museum’s holdings. Today, The Kiss is considered an icon of Viennese Art Nouveau and European Modernism. It is one of the most famous and most frequently reproduced works of art in the world.
Image by Belvedere
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