In partnership with Hong Kong's K11 Musea and art authentication platform ZHEN., the Japanese artist brings his hyper-realistic robotic shark — originally introduced in his "Aquatic" series over a decade ago — to life in a duo of digital collectibles.
The first, Untitled_Shark Robot (Day), is a 20-second animation of Sorayama's sharp-toothed creation that includes a "special un-lockable surprise." Priced at $299, the piece will be sold in a batch of 1,000 editions.
The second, Untitled_Shark Robot (Full), is a rarer collectible, limited to 100 editions priced at $3,700 each. Comprised of a 60-second animation, the work includes the aforementioned surprise along with a physical trading card.
Both pieces will be available for sale via raffle, open through October 22 to October 28 on the ZHEN. app.
"I aim for my work to be an inscription of a perpetual futuristic history," Sorayama said of his foray into NFTs. "So, even if the work I created is annihilated from this world, as long as the digital form survives, that’s fine."
Given Sorayama's popularity, it's easy to see both NFTs becoming instant successes, particularly Untitled_Shark Robot (Day). The piece's lower price point — considerably more affordable than the artist's physical prints — will allow his less affluent fans to own an authentic Sorayama creation.
Sorayama's entry into the metaverse deviates from the typical auction format of most blockchain-powered works.
Instead of launching the NFT on a marketplace such as OpenSea, where bidders purchase works using cryptocurrency, it seems Soryama and his collaborators will allow raffle entrants to use good old cash money.