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Top 10 Most Expensive NFTs of All Time: Beeple, Cryptopunks and Tweets

NFTs stands short for non-fungible tokens. Traded online, frequently with cryptocurrency, NFTs are digital assets representing real-world objects like art, music, in-game items, and videos. NFTs are generally encoded with the same underlying software as many cryptos.

The key characteristics that define NFTs are non-interoperability, indivisibility, indestructibility, and verifiability. These features have made NFTs a revolutionizing product, especially in the games and collectibles space. According to the data available at the time of drafting this report, the monthly volume of NFT sales had crossed the mark of US$323 million.

Not all NFTs can fetch an equal quantum of value from the market. Here, in this article, we would look at the top 10 most expensive NFTs of all time (at least so far).

PAK's The Merge NFT

1. Pak's The Merge - $91.8 million

Pak’s The Merge NFT collection will go down in history as the most expensive NFT ever sold. It is a collection of 312,686 units that have so far fetched $91.8 million.

Pak is among the world’s top digital artists. His collection was first auctioned on December 6th 2021, on Nifty Gateway. An anonymous buyer bought the Merge, and the pieces have inbuilt scarcity that ensures a deflationary value to the native token of the project.

2. “Everydays – The First 5000 Days” – $69.3 million

Beeple is the current record holder for the most expensive NFT art of all time

The digital artist Mike Winkelmann is known as Beeple. The NFT of his artwork, titled Everydays: The First 5000 Days, was sold by the globally revered auction house Christie’s for 69,346,250, or more than $69.3 million. The deal was closed on 11th March 2021.

In May 2007, Beeple set out on a mission to create and post a new work of art online every day. Not missing a day since he set out on the mission, Beeple produced artwork for every 5,000 days straight. In his ‘Everydays: The First 5000 Days’, Beeple stitched together recurring themes and color schemes from those 5,000 artworks to create an aesthetic whole.

The auction’s winner gets a digital file and some rights to present the image. Winkelmann will work with the buyer to find various ways to display the piece physically as well.

3. Clock – $52.7 million

NFT clock

Another expensive NFT that makes it on our list is Clock. This NFT collection is another creation from the anonymous artist called PAK and Julian Assange. What’s more, it was intended to be a fundraiser for Julian Assange regarding his arrest in 2019. The NFT collection runs like a clock counting days until the WikiLeaks founder’s release.

According to reports, Assange was charged with 17 offences in relation to violating the Espionage Act.

The artwork was sold for $52.7 million. As part of the collection, the artist designed the collection to allow users to create and further develop NFTs with censored messages at zero cost. The earnings from the NFTs are then directed to a pro-freedom organization.

4. Human One – $28.9 million

Beeple Human One

Human One is a 3D moving sculpture by artist Beeple. Beeple (Michael Winkelmann) is also the creator of the popular Everyday Collection of 5,000 digital art pieces. Human One, however, features a 3D moving image that sold for just under $30 million.

The piece is also closely related to Beeple’s Everydays collection.

5. CryptoPunk #5822 – $23.7 million

CryptoPunk 5822

CryptoPunk is a digital collectable art series created by Larva Labs in 2017. It’s comprised of 10,000 unique 8-bit characters, each one with its own unique attributes and traits.

CryptoPunk #5822 is the most expensive NFT of the entire collection. It was bought by Deepak Thapliyal (CEO of Chain). One of the reasons why it fetches a high price is because it is one of the few 9 CryptoPunk characters wearing a hat.

6. CryptoPunk #7523 – $11.75 m

Covid Alien Punk

CryptoPunk number 7523 is another expensive CryptoPunk NFT ever sold. It was bought by an anonymous collector at a price of $11.75 and is among the top three rare CryptoPunks.

Commonly referred to as Covid Alian, it is one of the few CryptoPunk characters wearing a mask.

7. CryptoPunk#3100 and #7804 – $7.58 and $7.57 Million

Did you know Cryptopunks are the first-ever NFTs on Ethereum? They are 10,000 unique collectible characters where no two are exactly alike, and each one of them can be owned by a single person on the Ethereum blockchain. Among these 10,000, only 9 are aliens.

Cryptopunk#3100 is one of these nine alien punks that fetched a selling price of $7.58 million. The punk is currently owned by the address 0x7b8961. Cryptopunk#7804, another alien punk from the series of 9, fetched a price of $7.57 million, only 0.01 million less than Cryptopunk#3100.

8. Crossroads by Beeple – $6.6 Million

Crossroads is another artwork by Beeple that sold for $6.6 million at the Nifty Gateway. Nifty Gateway is an online cryptocurrency marketplace for digital art. Crossroads evolved as an art piece designed as a response to the 2020 presidential election. The digital piece was designed in a way that – depending on the election’s outcome – either a video featuring a victorious Trump or a despondent Trump would play. The artwork came as a blockchain-authenticated non-fungible token. The buyer gets an encrypted image or video file with the assurance of a digital signature signifying the authenticity of the work.

9. Jack Dorsey’s First Tweet – $2.9 Million

Within two weeks of Twitter founder Jack Dorsey deciding to sell his first tweet as an NFT, it secured a price of $2,915,835.47, more than $2.9 million. The winning bidder was Sina Estavi. The platform Valuables by Cent handled the bid. It is a platform that specializes in letting people make offers on tweets signed by their original creators. On March 21st, 2006, the first tweet that Dorsey made read this: “just setting up my twttr”.

According to reports, Sina Estavi made the payment using Ether. Converted in Ether, the amount came to 1630.5825601. Dorsey, as promised earlier, converted the bid amount into Bitcoin and donated it to GiveDirectly – a charitable organization, for its Africa Response program.

Sina Estavi, as the winning bidder, got a digital certificate of the tweet, signed and verified by Dorsey. As per Valuable by Cent’s policy, 95% of the bidding amount goes to the tweet’s original creator, and 5% goes to Valuable by Cent.

10. Cryptopunk#3011 – $1.76 Million

Among the 10,000 Cryptopunks, there are 6,039 male punks. Cryptopunk 3011 is one of the male punks. On April 27th, 2021, the Cryptopunk was sold by the address 0xc05488 to the address 0xab61cc for $1.76 million. Later it was transferred from the address 0xab61cc to the address 0xe30161. 0xe30161 is the current owner.

When Cryptopunks was originally conceptualized, they could be claimed for free by anybody with an Ethereum wallet. All 10,000 punks were claimed quickly. If anyone wants to have them now, they would have to purchase them from the Cryptopunks marketplace embedded on the blockchain. Through this marketplace, one can buy, bid on, or offer punks for sale.

Conclusion: NFTs Are Still Hot

It is a fact beyond doubt that interest in NFTs and their market size – as a result – both are on a surge. In the days to come, new deals will take place, and the list will change. Yet, experts believe that the craze for NFTs, ranging from art and videos to songs and tweets, will eventually stabilize.

The initial surge of NFTs was attributed to people spending more time online during the lockdown with more cash to spare. The momentum was further fueled by a newly evolved group of crypto-rich speculators keen to leverage digital asset price gains.

By the time 2021 concluded NFTs had racked in a staggering $25 billion. Sports, games, Metaverse and collectibles remain the most popular categories in terms of NFTs but digital music and tickets are also expected to a significant role in the future.

Interestingly NFTs are not necessarily correlated to the price of cryptocurrencies as the market ebbs and flows its own beat. NFT sales peaked in the summer of 2021 but recently have shown signs of renewed interest so its difficult to say if the market is set to finally stabilize or another big growth spurt is coming.

It’s anyone’s guess as to whether we’ll see some new records fall over the coming months.

NFT Frequently Asked Questions

It depends on the crypto network. Ethereum (which is the most popular platform for NFTs) has high gas fees so there’s always going to be a bit of a floor for pricing.

Other crypto networks offer cheap transactions where NFT could potentially only cost a few bucks.

That would be Vignesh Sundaresan, who’s also known as MetaKovan, thanks to his purchase of Beeple’s “Everyday – the First 5000 Days” piece.

The digital artist Mike Winkelmann, who has actually been around far longer than NFTs.

Larva Labs launched CryptoPunks in 2017. The Larva Labs also created Cryptokitties.

Yuga Labs, creators of Bored Ape Club and ApeCoin, acquired CryptoPunks in 2022. is by far the most popular NFT marketplace although several exchanges including FTX, Coinbase and have launched their own marketplaces.

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