Ex-security software guru, turned crypto and blockchain enthusiastic, not to mention a would-be presidential candidate John McAfee seems to be everywhere these days, hence his latest dip into the world of fine art.
In his latest role as blockchain influencer, McAfee is turning to the tokenization of classic paintings, with Picasso set firmly in his sights. To this end, he’s teamed up with Blockchain-based art investment platform Maecenas and ERC20 crypto exchange Ethershift in order to produce what is hailed as the first “perpetual digitalization and tokenization of a Picasso’s work of fine art.”
The team, codenamed “Project Phoenix,” plans to auction the as yet unnamed Picasso this December and has announced the event on the Maecenas website:
“The auctioning process will be executed using Maecenas technology. The newly created digital asset, the first of its kind, will be represented as a single ERC721 token for the digitalized artwork. A fixed number of ERC20 tokens will separately represent shared ownership in the physical asset.”
This is not the first of McAfee’s forays into the art world after Andy Warhol’s ‘14 small electric chairs’ were tokenized earlier this year with 31.5% of the painting’s value sold to investors who paid in either BTC or ETH. Maecenas offered immutable purchase history and ownership information on the Warhol, connecting investors and art dealers on the platform while running a smart contract on the Ethereum blockchain. McAfee was proud to announce his latest art coup on Twitter:
“I am helping to tokenize rare art objects – a groundbreaking Blockchain application. We will auction a tokenized Picasso at the end of December. This is our second tokenized painting. The first was a resounding success.”
With Project Phoenix soon to see its tokens available to the public on the Ethereuem blockchain, there is a risk that McAfee invites the usual “shilling” accusations from his critics – the spreading of positive information about a product which may or may not be accurate in order to gain investor interest. It has been noted that McAfee tweets about new blockchain enterprises or projects often lead to huge price gains, opening him up to accusations of manipulating investors.
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