The Business of Art and How NFTs Will Change It, With Nanne Dekking

With much of the world focused on bitcoin and ether as prices breach new all-time high after all-time high, the “Money Reimagined” crew embarks on a more nuanced journey, one that eschews world-changing networks for an art-changing renaissance that’s been long in the making. We’re talking, of course, about the nonfungible token (NFT) movement that has engulfed the world of crypto collectibles. With big brands like Christie’s auction house and the National Basketball Association getting involved and some tokens already selling for six-figure sums, the question isn’t if NFTs will force a very old industry to adopt some very new practices, it’s when.

On today’s episode of CoinDesk’s “Money Reimagined,” Michael Casey and Sheila Warren are joined by Nanne Dekking, CEO of Artory and formerly the top salesman at Sotheby’s.

Founded in 2016, Artory is creating the first standardized data collection solution by the art world, for the art world. In his former position at Sotheby’s New York, Dekking was vice chairman and the worldwide head of Private Sales. His close relationships with collectors and museums were integral to the continued growth of private sales at Sotheby’s. Prior to joining Sotheby’s, Nanne was vice president of Wildenstein & Co. He advised individuals, museums and foundations on the formation and development of their collections. From 1996-2001 Nanne was the founder and principal of Nanne Dekking Fine Arts, an art consultancy firm and gallery in New York.

“Which scholar do I trust? Who in the art market do I trust?” Dekking said. “They don’t want to trust anyone.”

In this wide-ranging introduction to NFTs, collectibles and the traditional art market, the discussion ranges from Sheila Warren’s Cryptokitty genealogy to the challenges of selling paintings by the old masters in litigious modern markets, plus a whole lot more.

See also: Government Reimagined, With Jeff Saviano and Glen Weyl

“There are so many charitable things you can do with all this technology but ultimately you want the market to understand the commercial benefits of it. Then it goes fast. The moment you’re in the realm of charity, it’s like ‘this is such a nice idea’ but in a way you’re dead in the water already if the market just thinks this is only nice for a charitable reason,” said Nanne Dekking, CEO of Artory and formerly the top salesman at Sotheby’s. “As long as the market believes opaqueness will help [its] business model, which it doesn’t any more, it’s a very old-fashioned idea… The moment Art-Net came up, the moment Google existed … it’s all about this crazy idea that you as a human being are so important in the sales process to an artwork. I mean, you’re not.”

Image Credit: Anna Hunko/Unsplash modified by CoinDesk