M.I.A. announces NFT auction

© Steph Wilson

“It’s only now that the appropriate gallery for my work finally exists.”

M.I.A. is auctioning off digital art in the form of a NFT (non-fungible token). Entitled GIFTY 1, the one-off artwork forms part of a wider art collection called NFT GARAGE DANCE. As outlined in a press release, the artwork sees the musician and visual artist “bookending her 25-year tenure as a digital artist and collected as a GIF”. She intends to follow it up with another NFT drop. Next time, she’ll be auctioning off her very first digital artwork, KALA COYN, which was created back in 1996.

KALA COYN and the GARAGE DANCE series is a living, breathing, psycho-spectral canvas that crystalizes this moment in time for me,” says M.I.A. in a statement. “Visually, it’s a mind f*ck and embodies everything I’ve loved about the digital art arena. It’s only now that the appropriate gallery for my work finally exists.”

A string of high-profile musicians such as Aphex Twin and Grimes have jumped aboard the NFT train in recent months. Meanwhile, artists like Nils Frahm have shared their thoughts on the digital art trend. In a recent interview with The Independent, Frahm said, “Some of my heroes like Aphex Twin are selling, sorry, crap for 130,000 bucks… It’s unforgivable to participate in something which is so bleak and wrong.”

M.I.A. will be auctioning off her newly-minted NFT via specialist platform Foundation. The 24-hour auction is scheduled to take place this Thursday (8 March) and commences at 9pm (BST). You can check out the full collection here.

Revisit M.I.A.’s cover story.