Art Basel has a long tradition of being the physical epicenter of art-culture each year, with top artists traveling to Miami to showcase their works and network with high-net worth collectors, dealers, galleries, and museums.
The massive rise of the digital art markets seen throughout the past year have shifted this dynamic, with crypto-native art now taking over the annual event as digital art collectors swarm the city.
Miami couldn’t be a more fitting venue for the week either, as the city has been striving to become a hub for cryptocurrency throughout 2021. The city’s Bitcoin-friendly mayor has led this charge, and the Miami Heat stadium was recently renamed the FTX Arena.
Multiple events have captured the attention of Art Basel attendees, with many crypto-focused events stealing the headlines from the traditional art-world events.
One such event — Size Basel — has particularly captured the interest of the crypto-art sphere. The event is being hosted by several well-known figures within the space, including “Size Chad,” who is a beloved character in the space known for his, well, “chad-like” appearances. Other hosts include “Discount Gosling” and Zhi Ko.
The event garnered sponsorship from some major players within the space, including Arbitrum, Sushi, Stacked, SoundArts, Highstreet, Rarestone, and BitDAO — the world’s largest DAO.
While speaking about the event, Size Chad noted that “we wanted to curate an influential gathering of Crypto Twitter minds to further promote the growth of NFTs and Crypto Twitter in Miami, nationwide, and globally. We have the chance to use our collective brands and passions to further push what we believe is one of the most transformational times of our lives – and have fun while doing it.”
Event co-host Zhi Ko added “the demand for the event has been incredible. We have been approached by non-crypto artists, entertainers, and Art Basel regulars looking for a change of scenery. We hope to make this an annual event and grow it over the years.”
Other NFT events throughout the city have been hosted by powerhouses within the traditional art world, like auction house Christies, as well as crypto-native firms like FTX.
The demand for these in-person events highlights that NFTs are gaining an increasing grasp on the art world, and may be much more than a passing fad.