The rarest Pepe of them all, “Homer Pepe”, has sold for 205 ETH ($320,000) according to owner Peter Kell.
The one-of-a-kind card displays a morph between Simpsons character Homer and the infamous Pepe The Frog.
Pepe is a cartoon frog created by artist Matt Furie and has inspired countless memes on the internet including Rare Pepes, one of the first art experiments on blockchain.
The Homer Pepe is a user-generated card from the Rare Pepe collectibles platform developed by Joe Looney in 2016 and showcased in the Rare Art Labs Digital Art Festival in 2018. The card was acquired by Kell at the first-ever live auction for blockchain art for $38,500 — said to be the highest price for a non-fungible token, or NFT, at the time. The artwork was also recently featured in the Sundance Film Festival award-winning documentary, "Feels Good Man." The documentary’s official Twitter account said the card sold for more than the cost to make the entire film.
The new owner, TokenAngels, appears to be accumulating hundreds of other NFTs in the series, and rushed to pick up the most prized one after news emerged it was up for grabs.
“I had to sell a few punks in a hurry,” TokenAngels explained referring to collectibles CryptoPunks. “It was for far less than they’re worth but it was so important to get the funds together to make the transaction on time!”. Joe Looney acted as escrow for the sale.
Well-known artist Matt Kane, honored in Cointelegraph’s Top 100 this year, had earlier created a tribute artwork to Homer Pepe and his tweet about it drew attention to the fact that Kell was looking to sell the original.
Kane said: "I see HOMERPEPE as the most important NFT in art history because its headline-making sale in 2018 influenced so many of the original crypto artists to believe we could put our art to work building both a market and belief around this new technology."
NFTs, in general, have seen explosive growth this year with more than $300M in sales being generated in the first two months. OpenSea co-founder and chief technology officer Alex Atallah stated earlier this week that the market has grown by more than 7,000% from last year:
“After @3LAU's drop last night, the February Ethereum NFT market passed $300m. That's 7450% growth from last year,” he said on Mar.1.
Renowned music artist 3LAU made history by partnering with Origin Protocol to release his new album through an NFT auction to the top 33 bidders. Raising more than $11.6 million with the top bidder offering $3,666,666. 3LAU also promised to collaborate with the top six bidders to create a custom song or remix for each individual.
Beeple hit the news last week with his Crossroads NFT reselling on the secondary market for $6.6 million. He has also broken through into the mainstream art sector with his “EVERYDAYS: THE FIRST 5000 DAYS” NFT currently being auctioned off at Christie’s auction house. Bids for the piece are currently sitting at $3.25 million.
Painter Trevor Jones showed the power of the NFT market with his “Bitcoin Angel” painting raising more than $3.2 million with 4,157 editions sold in seven minutes.