Marina and Florian Picasso are planning to sell a ceramic heirloom from the legendary artist as NFTs.


Marina Picasso and her son Florian Picasso, granddaughter and great-grandson of the celebrated 20th-century Spanish painter Pablo Picasso will be vaulting into 21st-century commerce by selling 1,010 digital art pieces of one of the artist's never seen before ceramic works.

“We’re trying to build a bridge between the NFT world and the fine art world,” said Florian. According to the family's promoters, this move "would mark the entry of a Grand Master" into the NFT game.

A glimpse of sneak peek

Planning to ride a fad for “crypto” assets that have taken the art and financial worlds by storm, Marina offered a glimpse into the collection earlier this week, billed as "an unprecedented fusion of old-school fine art and digital assets", stored safely in their apartment — which is swimming in works from their illustrious ancestor in an upscale Geneva neighborhood.

Florian and Marina only sneaked a sliver of a ceramic piece about the size of a large salad bowl that becomes the base of the incoming NFT. Associated Press described the exposed part to have "a thick yellow line, a dribbling green splotch, and a brushed-on number '58' at the base."

Marina explained that the precious pottery was made by an illustrious artist in October 1958.

“It’s a work that represents a face, and it’s very expressive,” she said. “It’s joyful, happy. It represents life ... It’s one of those objects that have been part of our life, our intimate lives — my life with my children.”

Florian later added that they agreed on the colorful ceramic piece because it was “a fun one” to start. The NFTs will also come with music put together by Florian, who is a DJ and music producer, along with songwriter John Legend and rapper Nas.

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A not very Picasso approach

The non-fungible tokens, or NFTs, trend, which has netted millions for far-less-known artists, has been heavily criticized by some as environmentally costly get rich schemes. One can only imagine how many zeros it would be with Picasso's work.

In economics jargon, a fungible token is an asset that can be exchanged on a one-for-one basis. Think of traditional Rupiahs, for example. With Rupiah, each coin and paper bill has the exact same value and can be traded freely. However, a non-fungible object, by contrast, has its own distinct value, like an old house or a classic car or art in general. You can read more about NFT here.

“Everything is evolving,” said Florian Picasso, insisting that the NFT honors the great artist and aim to create a younger community of Picasso fans. “I think it fits within Picasso’s legacies because we are paying tribute to him and his way of working, which was always being creative."

"An NFT Picasso brings with it almost epochal symbolism, something like when the Beatles collection was finally put up on iTunes," Associated Press commented. "How quaint seem those days of yore when Picasso, as the legend has it, would simply doodle on a napkin as payment for a restaurant meal — his handiwork supposedly carrying a value far in excess of the cost of the food and drinks he had enjoyed."

Florian Picasso's longtime manager Cyril Noterman and Kathryn Frazier, the publicist for the project, revealed that an online sale of more than 1,000 other NFTs will start Friday through the Nifty Gateway and Origin Protocol. Some portion of the proceeds will be donated to a charity that aims to help overcome a shortage of nurses and an NGO that wants to help reduce carbon in the atmosphere. 

Despite an initial announcement that famous auction house Sotheby’s would host an auction in March that will include a unique NFT as well as the actual ceramic bowl, Matthew Floris, a spokesman for Sotheby’s, refuted. Floris debunked the hearsay, saying: “Sotheby’s has clarified that it will not be selling an NFT of a work by Pablo Picasso.”


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