In collaboration with the artèQ investment fund, the Belvedere museum is launching a nonfungible token (NFT) drop of a historical masterpiece. Just in time for Valentine’s Day, the most famous depiction of a pair of lovers will be offered for sale as a limited number of digital artworks.
Gustav Klimt’s “The Kiss,” one of the world’s most famous works of art and the centerpiece of the Belvedere’s collection, will be implemented as an NFT. A high-resolution digital copy will be divided into a 100-by-100 grid, resulting in 10,000 inimitable individual pieces that will be offered as NFTs.
In addition to purchasing NFTs, buyers can register as owners of their pieces at TheKiss.Art, where the picture can be viewed in its entirety. It can serve as a declaration of love in time for Valentine’s Day.
Stella Rollig, general director of the Belvedere, said, “What does it mean to own a work of art in the digital age? The rise of NFTs, which has preoccupied the art world since 2020, has given fresh impetus to this intriguing question. The conversion of digital reproductions into virtual originals opens up new forms of participation that, in financial terms, should be taken seriously, yet can also be viewed playfully.”
The Belvedere museum expects a high level of interest from NFT collectors. Wolfgang Bergmann, managing director of the Belvedere, said, “The very small number of shares for the world market and the fact that each piece is unique is what makes these tokens so valuable.”
Farbod Sadeghian, founder of artèQ, said, “We are proud that artèQ’s innovative technology and concept was chosen for the implementation of this globally unique project and that we were allowed to become a partner of the project.”
The 10,000 NFTs can be purchased at an estimated retail price of about 1,850 euros ($2,094) each. A whitelisting phase will begin on Jan. 26 at 11 pm UTC. Interested parties can register to purchase on the TheKiss.Art platform. On Feb. 9, prospective buyers will receive authorization to purchase minted NFTs, and the 10,000 segments of the work will be allocated at random.
The NFTs will be officially released by Valentine’s Day, Feb. 14. The issued NFT certificates will then show the digital part of the painting purchased, and an individual dedication of love can be added to the NFT on the platform’s website. These dedications can be seen on the platform starting Feb. 14. The NFTs can be resold via any commercially available NFT sales platform.
Gustav Klimt’s ‘The Kiss’
The couple in “The Kiss” appear intimately entangled, oblivious to their surroundings and lost in their embrace. With this work at the height of his golden period, Austrian painter Gustav Klimt created a universal allegorical statement about love as a central theme of human existence. The Austrian State bought the work when it was first presented in 1908 for the recently founded Modern Gallery in the Lower Belvedere. Since then, the painting has remained in the museum’s holdings. Today, “The Kiss” is considered an icon of the Viennese Art Nouveau period and European modernism. It is one of the most famous works of art in the world.
About the Belvedere
Austrian art is presented in an international context at three locations of the Belvedere museum in Vienna. The Baroque complex of the Upper and Lower Belvedere and its garden is a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization World Heritage Site. Its renowned art collection includes works ranging from the Middle Ages to the present day. With 24 paintings by Gustav Klimt, the Belvedere possesses the world’s largest collection of his paintings. Other highlights include prominent works from the Viennese Biedermeier period, the Austrian Baroque, Vienna around 1900 and French Impressionism. Continued development and digitization in all areas will ensure the Belvedere’s status as an outstanding museum in the future as well.
ArtèQ is an NFT investment fund and auction house aiming to unite innovation, technology and art. The platform brings artists, art collectors and investors closer to digital art using the safest technology available. With its international team of specialists in technology, finance and the arts, artèQ not only guarantees professional support but also constant adaptation to the latest developments in the blockchain market.