The recent rise of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) has sent ripples through the art world, raising questions for artists, museums, and the art market. Do NFTs empower artists by giving them more control of their work, or does this latest “disruption” simply reproduce existing market dynamics? What are the implications of NFTs for museums, and do they go beyond the systems currently in place for certifying authenticity?

The Hirshhorn Museum has assembled a dynamic panel of experts from different corners of the art world to help us understand the current NFT craze, and debate the future of blockchain technology’s impact on artists and cultural institutions.

Panelists (in alphabetical order)

Anne Bracegirdle is an art + blockchain thought leader, currently Head of Sales US for Convelio and Co-Founder of the Art & Antiquities Blockchain Consortium. She previously led digital strategy at Superblue, and while at Christie’s New York, she spearheaded the Art + Tech Initiative which included the 2018 conference ‘Exploring Blockchain: Is the Art World Ready for Consensys?’ During her ten years at Christie’s she was a specialist of Russian Art, 19th Century European Art, and Photographs. Anne speaks widely on the topic of art and blockchain and has been cited in The New York Times, The Financial Times, Forbes, The Art Newspaper, among others.

Claudia Hart is an artist and professor in the Department of Film, Video, New Media, and Animation at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her work examines issues of identity and representation as they relate to computing and simulations technologies. Claudia’s works are widely exhibited and collected by institutions including MoMA, the Met, and the Whitney Museum of American Art.

Kenny Schachter has been curating contemporary art exhibits in museums and galleries and teaching art history and economics for nearly 30 years. He has lectured internationally, been the recipient of a Rockefeller-supported grant in Mexico and contributed to books on Paul Thek, Zaha Hadid, Vito Acconci and Sigmar Polke/Gerhard Richter. In addition to writing widely for various international publications, Schachter has a regular column on Artnet.com where he has recently written about NFTs and the “new virtual art market.”

Jerry Saltz is the senior art critic at New York Magazine and its entertainment site Vulture.com, a leading voice in the art world at large, and an innovative user of social media. He joined the magazine’s staff in 2007, and his writing ranges from cover stories to reviews to quick online commentaries. He won a National Magazine Award for Columns & Commentary in 2015, and was a finalist for the same award in 2011. Full bio

Moderator

Marina Isgro joined the Hirshhorn as Associate Curator in March 2020 and is responsible for the Museum’s collection of media and performance art. She is the curator of the forthcoming exhibition John Akomfrah: Purple and has brought works by Sondra Perry and Jacolby Satterwhite into the collection. Isgro was previously a curatorial fellow at the Harvard Art Museums, where she curated Nam June Paik: Screen Play.

This event is part of #HirshhornInsideOut, the Museum’s initiative to bring art into your home.

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