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Pieces of Eight: $60m Batman NFTs, 'mythical' wine, NASA's moon dust up for grabs and the art market bounces back

Pieces of Eight: $60m Batman NFTs, 'mythical' wine, NASA's moon dust up for grabs and the art market bounces back

🍷 Buyers have swooped on a Sotheby’s auction of Château Lynch-Bages wines sourced from the Bordeaux estate’s cellars, featuring the vaunted 1961 vintage, large-format bottles and a 2020 vintage lot including dinner with the owners.

Top lot was a barrel of Lynch-Bages 2020, to be bottled with personalised labels in a format of the buyer’s choice, plus a tour of the new winery and dinner with the Cazes family. It fetched £43,750 ($57,690), versus a pre-sale high estimate of £35,000.

🦇 DC next month will release the Bat Cowl Collection — a total of 200,000 unique NFTs, which are 3D-rendered images that draw on the Caped Crusader’s 83-year history. The nonfungible tokens (NFTs) will be priced at $300 apiece, meaning DC and Warner Bros. are looking at landing $60 million from the drop.

“What’s exciting about this amazing collaboration is that we are continuing the evolution of [Batman’s] distinctive Bat Cowl by bringing it into the modern digital world, making it accessible and more wildly engaging than ever before.” - DC Publisher and Chief Creative Officer Jim Lee said in a statement.

Our Take: Experiences are becoming increasingly important for collectors purchasing high value items, whether it is a tour and dinner with the producers of 'mythical' wine or augmented reality and metaverse privileges for NFT owners. At the surface level this could simply be seen as collectors demanding more for their money, but we think it indicates a desire to be part of the items legacy, to engage with and learn from like-minded individuals with a passion for the same subject material.

🚀 A sample of moon dust collected by Neil Armstrong during the Apollo 11 mission will go under the hammer in New York next month. As part of a Bonhams auction of rare space-history-related artifacts, the lunar sample is expected to fetch around $1 million. And thanks to an unusual series of events, this will be the first time moon dust verified by NASA has been sold legally.

🧐 The Art Market 2022 report has arrived and it states that following its biggest recession for 10 years in 2020, the global art market recovered strongly in 2021, with aggregate sales of art and antiques by dealers and auction houses reaching an estimated $65.1 billion, up by 29% from 2020, with values also surpassing pre-pandemic levels of 2019.

Our Take: The art market has bounced back, but the exponential growth of art and collectables NFTs is competing for collectors hard earned cash. Sales on NFT platforms on the Ethereum, Flow, and Ronin blockchains have grown from $4.6 million in 2019 to $11.1 billion in 2021. The ease of access, storage and purchase is appealing to collectors whilst artists are able to take greater control of their work.

That's it for this week, thanks as always for reading and if you have any comments please get in touch via hello@showpiece.com.

The Showpiece Team