The Digital Art Market with Seth Goldstein

Eli, Derek, and Sam joined forces this week to chat about the NFT market, Art Blocks volume, and the Three Arrows Capital liquidation. They also welcomed special guest Seth Goldstein, the founder of Bright Moments, to share his story about creating Bright Moments, scaling it across the world, and the magic of the Bright Moments Tokyo event. Let’s recap some of the more interesting takeaways from the show.

NFT Market Update

What stands out about Art Blocks and 1of1s is the significant decrease in volumes recently. There have been days when no project other than Chromie Squiggles had more than 5 ETH in volume – compared to earlier times when multiple projects exceeded 10 ETH volume. A similar trend is observed in 1of1 sales. While some artists still command high prices, many are selling at lower ranges or experiencing fewer transactions.

In contrast, the PFP space has shown signs of recovery over the past week with exciting developments like Memeland Captains and Pudgy Penguins garnering attention. However, it is essential to note that volumes have decreased overall – which could be viewed positively, as it indicates reduced dumping into bids. As volumes drop and prices stabilize somewhat, we can identify a few trends, for example low volume for art space projects and positive energy within specific stories such as ACK’s piano set or Elon Musk tweeting about Milady NFTs.

The analysis points towards an environment where people have the liquidity to invest, but concerns about price drops hold them back. However, when positive momentum is observed, buyers are more willing to spend their ETH on these assets.

Art Blocks Volume

The volume of Art Blocks collections has decreased significantly. In a bull market, anything from their brand thrives – especially curated works by great artists. However, in a bear market, collectors become more discerning when evaluating artworks based on concept and visuals.

Art Blocks did well with different framings like seasons or full sets for collectors but as those fade away during downturns, people rely less on Art Blocks. Ultimately though, this could be healthy for curators who need to ask deeper questions and consider broader aspects instead of blindly minting whatever is tagged as Art Blocks Curated.

Art Blocks currently shows few listings available partly due to expired listings. One chart indicated half of recent trades involved sellers accepting bids rather than buyers initiating them. Another chart displayed low total trade volume over seven days suggesting lack of activity and liquidity – causing concerns regarding NFT investments’ long-term value holding potential. Only a handful of collections, like Chromie Squiggles, seem unfazed due to their unique historical significance.

To boost interest in digital art economies new buyers need education about potential future growth driven by factors such as societal shifts towards owning digital objects. Potential buyer segments include funds, high net worth individuals, and contemporary art collectors seeking exposure to digital assets through platforms like Art Blocks, Bright Moments, and SuperRare. Through storytelling and educational efforts explaining the properties of this technology alongside organizations’ contributions within this field, these markets may experience significant change over time.

3AC Sotheby’s Grails

The ongoing 3AC Sotheby’s Grails auction, featuring notable NFTs such as Fidenzas, a Cryptopunk, an Autoglyph, and others, raises questions about the impact of provenance on value. Provenance is particularly significant for large collectors; however, its effect on value isn’t always clear-cut.

Art from the 3AC Sotheby’s auction.

Three Arrows Capital (3AC) assembled this collection during market growth using their capital and resources. The involvement of Sotheby’s highlights collectability and emphasizes the story told through on-chain provenance. In traditional art markets, similar stories can add to or detract from the perceived value. NFTs with remarkable stories may increase in relative value over time due to notoriety. However, some might hesitate to invest in pieces associated with organizations like 3A Aero Capital that have negative reputations.

Ultimately, determining which art will stand the test of time requires a long-term perspective considering what gains relevance as more money comes into play. Questions regarding whether specific artworks will retain significance or if paying millions now would be worthwhile compared to possible future discounts remain unanswered unfortunately.

Meet Seth Goldstein

The next segment is about Seth Goldstein, the founder of Bright Moments – the company that has been making waves in the digital art space.

Seth started young during Web 1 in his mid-20s when he founded an early web marketing company. With a background in avant-garde theatre and performance art from Columbia University, Seth was drawn to technology mainly as a way to archive contemporary artists’ work. Later Seth transitioned into entrepreneurship, most notably – an online music platform which aimed to make online listening experiences more social. More recently, he moved to Venice Beach where he began exploring NFTs during the pandemic.

Bright Moments in Venice Beach

Inspired by meme stocks like GameStop and NBA Top Shot along with platforms like SuperRare and Foundation for digital art minting/selling; it clicked for him that NFTs were here to stay as powerful creative tools. So he decided to establish Bright Moments differently by using native crypto governance instead of traditional startup structures.

The first physical location of the project was launched at Venice Beach amidst strict pandemic restrictions which added another layer of uniqueness since offline NFT galleries were practically unheard of back then. This combination of new file formats coupled with Art Blocks’ collaboration created something special which he continued building upon while expanding city by city.

Looking back, he learned valuable lessons and tailored experiences for each location. For instance, when Derek met Seth in early 2021, he initially hesitated to invest due to the physical aspect of the project but quickly realized that there was something incredibly powerful about bringing those digital connections into real life through human interaction.

Now a member of the DAO and an avid supporter of Bright Moments, Derek’s experience highlights how important it is to recognize and embrace the potential impact these new technologies can have on our lives both online and offline.

Derek helped to create the Bright Moments DAO, consisting of a thousand crypto citizens per city governing a partially decentralised physical NFT art gallery.

The inaugural show took place in Venice Beach, featuring Jeff Davis from Art Blocks. To attract visitors during downtime between shows, they offered free NFTs if the person covered the gas fees. Attendees had to be physically present at the gallery to mint their Crypto Venetian.


Collectors worldwide began taking interest as our community grew. One day, Bob Eiger, then-CEO of Disney, visited the gallery and minted his own character — catching people’s attention and raising prices.

As Seth traveled for drops across different places, each city introduced him to talented artists who contributed their work or joined the team. Tokyo for example stood out due to its rich cultural atmosphere; it showcased how NFTs could be more than just digital profile pictures.

So where is Bright Moments headed next?

Each city offers unique ways to experience crypto art that challenge assumptions — from Berlin’s monumental approach to London’s intimate setting or Mexico’s festive atmosphere blending technology with tradition—all are distinct experiences! Buenos Aires will focus on outdoor experiences and highlighting South American artists’ contributions to generative and AI art. Bright Moments aims for deeper conversations between artists and collectors while exploring natural landscapes for future events.

Catch all the details and nuances in the full episode of 100 Proof here:

A digital magazine curating remarkable digital art content, putting the spotlight on artists and content creators that deserve more recognition.