• Did Banksy just release his first NFT on Ether?

  • A link to NFT’s OpenSea listing was posted on Banksy’s official site today.

    The OpenSea list has attracted attention

    Looks like Banksy may have just cast his first NFT.

    This morning, a subpage on Banksy’s official website briefly appeared under the URL “banky.co.uk/NFT.html”. The page featured a digital artwork that linked to a listing on the popular NFT marketplace OpenSea, but has since disappeared from his site. The NFT was listed for sale on OpenSea and the auction is due to end this Friday, but it has already been sold.

    The piece, titled “The Great Redistribution of the Climate Change Disaster,” features an adapted image of Punk #7804 standing in the foreground of what looks like a pixel art-style factory. Punk #7804 is one of the most valuable pieces in the coveted CryptoPunks NFT series. It sold earlier this year for $7.57 million.

    This NFT was minted earlier today. The user’s Etherscan address can be viewed on Etherscan.

    NFT collector and influencer Pranksy brought attention to the listing earlier Tuesday by posting a link to it on Twitter. He and other NFT enthusiasts speculated whether the listing was a real deal. Some noted that NFT was listed by a user named “gaakmann” as part of the “gaakmann collection.” Banksy has previously used Bryan S Gaakmann, which is an anagram of “Banksy Anagram”. Since posting the link, Pranksy has entered a high price of 100WETH, or about $336,026.

    Another factor that may indicate the item is the real Banksy is the theme of the piece. Banksy is known for his support of environmental causes, so the commentary on climate change is in line with his previous work. NFTs have been particularly divisive as the technology has exploded this year; many have railed against the space because of its supposed impact on the environment (most NFTs today are minted on Ether, which still uses an energy-intensive proof-of-work mechanism before moving to Proof-of-Stake).

    Banksy is also one of the most elusive figures in the art world, known for his covert identity and elaborate stunts. One theory is that the secrecy of the listing fits his typical style.

    However, in the absence of any official confirmation or announcement from Banksy or his authenticating agency, Pest Control, it’s hard to say at this point if the item is genuine. It’s possible that someone hacked Banksy’s website and made the mistake of thinking he created the piece. Additionally, with the NFT scene booming this summer, scammers may be more inclined to take advantage of this hype. In recent months, other NFT pieces that mimic Banksy’s signature style have surfaced. One group also burned the original of his work and tokenized it on ethereum, raising $380,000 in an auction.

    However, if it’s legit, $336,026 might be a bargain for a one-of-a-kind NFT by one of the most popular street artists in history.

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