On the heels of Gucci’s Executive VP of Brand and Customer Engagement Robert Triefus revealing that it is “only a matter of time” before luxury brands get in on the non-fungible token – or “NFT” – game, the Italian design house is offering up its first NFT as part of a newly-unveiled auction at Christie’s. Entitled, “PROOF OF SOVEREIGNTY: A Curated NFT Sale by Lady PheOnix,” the NFT-specific auction, which runs from May 25 to June 3, contains a single work from Gucci: a fashion film co-directed by creative director Alessandro Michele and award-winning photographer and director Floria Sigismondi.
Despite the work being Gucci’s first venture into NFTs, the designer brand has already tested out digital-only fashion. Just earlier this week, Gucci sold a virtual rendering of its Dionysus bag via the online gaming platform Roblox for 350,000 Robux — roughly $4,115 — with its use limited to within the Roblox world as essentially an avatar accessory.
Tangible versions of the bag, which can be worn anywhere, usually retail for $3,400 — making this Roblox sale proof that consumers only care about an item’s exclusivity, regardless of price or practicality. Seeing as NFTs are basically rare or one-off .jpeg files, it was only a matter of time before Gucci entered the digital art market. The blockchain-linked works of art are another chance for labels to engage with their luxury-seeking consumers in a non-traditional way, The Fashion Law writes.
GUCCI’S MOST EXCLUSIVE ITEM YET — Inspired by Gucci’s recent Aria collection and its corresponding collection film, the new NFT encapsulates the same “dream-like landscape and effervescent energy,” according to the Christie’s listing. The auction house further describes Gucci’s new offering as “speaking to Aria’s overarching message — that of a universal desire for renewal; a yearning to bloom and flourish after the shadow of winter has passed. Doors open as darkness yields to light and that long-awaited feast of air.”
"The myth of foundation is reinhabited in the light of the present," Michele said when unveiling the "Aria" runway back in April. His enigmatic utterance is represented by Aria's robust light-soaked presentation, glossy 4K video that wraps shots of a door and galloping horse in fractured luster and ethereal sound.
Maybe that makes it worth the $20,000 starting bid (payable only in Ethereum cryptocurrency), suggesting Aria is probably the most expensive single item the house of Gucci has ever produced. Proceeds of its sale will go to a good cause, at least, as all profits garnered by the winning bid will be given to UNICEF USA to support its COVAX program, an initiative that aims to make COVID-19 vaccines available across the globe.
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