Christie’s announces Artory blockchain collaboration

A pilot project "reflects growing interest within our industry to explore the benefits of secure digital registry via blockchain technology"

The auction house, Christie’s, will be testing out blockchain technology during the autumn, as part of a collaboration with Artory.

In what is pitched as an industry first, each artwork from An American Place: The Barney A. Ebsworth Collection sold at Christie’s this November will include an encrypted certification of the sale for the successful bidder, providing a permanent digital record of relevant information about the artwork.

The collaboration is timed with Christie’s upcoming West Coast tour of major artworks from the Barney A. Ebsworth Collection. This is estimated to exceed $300 million total at auction.

Led by Edward Hopper’s Chop Suey, Christie’s will tour 13 paintings from the collection of more than 90 individual works to San Francisco and Los Angeles for public exhibitions. Among the featured paintings in the exhibitions are rarely seen works by Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, Georgia O’Keeffe, Jasper Johns, Marsden Hartley and Charles Sheeler.

The exhibitions are open to the public in San Francisco at Minnesota Street Gallery 16th-20th October, and in Los Angeles at Christie’s flagship Beverly Hills Gallery 23rd-27th October.

Our pilot collaboration with Artory is a first among the major global auction houses, and reflects growing interest within our industry to explore the benefits of secure digital registry via blockchain technology,” says Richard Entrup, Chief Information Officer at Christie’s.

“The entrepreneurial spirit of the Ebsworth family and their embrace of leading-edge technology makes Christie’s November sale of the Ebsworth Collection an ideal platform for our clients to experience this technology for themselves and to explore the advantages of having a secure encrypted record of information about their purchased artwork.”

“As long-standing participants and business leaders within the global art market, our team innately understands the needs of today’s art collectors and the broader desire within the industry to embrace new technologies that will help the marketplace evolve,” says Nanne Dekking, CEO of Artory.

“This November, Artory is pleased to work with Christie’s and the Ebsworth family to mark the start of a blockchain digital journey for each work in this spectacular collection, and to show the art world how digital encryption technology can benefit buyers and collectors in the future.”

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