Some days you're the pilgrim, some days you're the turkey (Issue #49)
Gobble gobble mfers, and good luck explaining your NFT habit to the family.
Welcome to this Thanksgiving issue of The Metaversalist. We’ll keep it short and sharp this week because we know many of you likely checked out of the week on Monday and have been dreaming of pie ever since. Mmm, pie.
In this week’s edition:
The problems of virtual real estate 🏠
Macy’s mascots marauding in the metaverse 🐡
A new virtual gallery from the one-eared baker 👂
Right, let’s get straight into it!
Animoca Brands’ metaverse/game, The Sandbox, announced yesterday that it’s partnered with 14 new brands and celebrities to create new virtual neighborhoods. The new partner neighborhoods have been grouped into three release “waves,” the first of which goes on sale today.
The partners include Tony Hawk, Paris Hilton, Cipriani, Playboy, and Time, and each of their neighborhoods will be a mix of “standard” and “premium” virtual plots (or “LANDs,” as The Sandbox calls them). Premium LANDs include “exclusive premium digital collectibles,” and for both standard and premium LANDs, The Sandbox is using a raffle system to try and ensure everyone who wants a piece gets a fair shot at it.
To participate in the raffles, users need to register, complete a know-your-customer (KYC) process and have at least 1,001 SAND on the Polygon network in their wallet. The first wave kicks off today, the second will start on December 1, and the third will follow in early 2023.
Will we be snapping up a bit of virtual real estate? We will not be, fren. While we definitely think the space has a future, we’re going to wait and see which of the various platforms vying to be the destination of choice for metaverse property moguls wins… also, digital property lacks many of the key traits that make IRL property attractive, most notably location and scarcity.
It’s always possible to make more digital real estate… and the platform that owns it can always choose to stick you with undesirable neighbors down the road. Which is why we’re sticking to collectibles, art, and access passes for now… but watching from the sidelines with interest.
Looks rare 🖼
We’re going to Miami 🏝
If you’re going to Miami Art Basel next month, we’d like to invite you to stop by FEMGEM, a one-day event we’re co-producing with VerticalCrypto Art, along with partners like Right Click Save, Art Blocks, Infinite Objects, and more.
We believe inclusion and representation in the NFT space matters, which is why we’re proud to be involved with FEMGEM and its efforts to elevate the wonderful work so many women are creating, but which doesn’t always get the recognition or support it deserves. You can RSVP over here.
Did someone you’re seeing for Thanksgiving share this with you? You should probably subscribe in case you get seated next to them.
Probably nothing 🤔
Macy’s metaverse parade 🐩
Tomorrow, millions of people will line Manhattan’s Central Park West and 6th Avenue to watch enormous inflatables pass by them, as happens every year. This year, however, there’ll also be the option to visit a mini Macy’s Day Parade in the metaverse.
The retailer is hosting a scaled-down, virtual version of its annual extravaganza in OnCyber, starting at 9am ET. Visitors can access the virtual parade from a smartphone, tablet, or computer.
“Within the virtual Parade experience, fans can explore five galleries featuring NFT collections from Boss Beauties, Cool Cats, gmoney, SupDucks and VeeFriends,” Macy’s explains in its press release. Visitors can vote for their favorite project, and the most popular will see one of its NFTs turned into a real-world float for the 2023 parade.
Art of This Millennium 🎨
Notable NFT collector Vincent Van Dough has launched a new virtual art gallery called “Art of the This Millennium” (AOTM) and announced a roster of 32 artists it will represent at launch. The list includes the likes of Claire Silver, Dmitri Cherniak, Grant Riven Yun, Isaac Wright, Mpkoz, Ness Graphics, and Rare Scrilla.
“It is our aim to combine elements of the rapidly evolving CryptoArt market with learnings from top traditional galleries to create an environment which allows artists to pursue their wildest ambitions and transcend boundaries, achieving widespread global recognition for their work and unique styles,” says Van Dough.
The gallery will focus on “online sales and exhibitions” at launch, but Van Dough says there are “plans to expand to physical exhibitions in the coming years.” The online gallery also includes an editorial section with interviews with artists and deep dives into their works and processes.
😢 Points for effort 👏
To the moon 🌛
One of the most hyped NFT projects of recent weeks, Valhalla, put out a killer teaser video that sets the bar for others. Whether the project can turn into the Azuki rival it clearly aspires to be… well, that remains to be seen.
Aegis Trust has created a $25 million NFT insurance policy for institutional investors.
Pudgy Penguins licensed a Penguin to Kellogg’s and it’s set to appear on a cereal box.
NFT marketplace Magic Eden — the OpenSea of Solana NFTs — has added support for NFTs minted on the Polygon Blockchain:
Toymaker Mattel has launched a “digital collectibles marketplace,” and the first collection to launch on it will be Series 4 of the Hot Wheels NFT garage.
A piece from Tyler Hobbs’ collection Fidenza sold for 295 ETH (~$345,000):
Bugatti Group (the luggage maker, not the automaker) is making a collection of Bored Ape Yacht Club-themed suitcases.
🪡 Thread of the week 🧵
Bedtime reading 📚
Two landmark events happened in the second week of November. The first was the implosion of cryptocurrency exchange FTX (and its sister investment firm Alameda), and the second was Art Block’s generative art celebration in Marfa, Texas. Attendees will attest the vibes were ridiculously high, despite the event taking place in the shadow of one of the most damaging debacles in crypto history.
We’re huge fans, supporters, and collectors of generative art, and we believe it will be one of the most enduring categories of NFTs in years to come. We’re not the only ones. Noted Tezos and gen-art fan, Kaloh, seems to agree and argues that perhaps gen-art can weather storms that PFPs and other NFT projects can’t:
Goats only 🐐
Whether you like your real estate IRL or di-gi-tal, you should be watching or listening to Goats and the Metaverse.
In each episode, collectibles OG and entrepreneur Stan “The Goat” Meytin and Metaversal co-founder and CEO Yossi Hasson talk about digital and IRL collectibles, NFTs, and the week’s news worth knowing.
This week, they contemplate the future of ETH and take stock of what they’re grateful for. Check out the latest episode here:
Aside from providing invaluable insights into digital art and collectibles, Stan and Yossi have assembled a collection of NFTs dubbed “The Goat Vault.” When the show hits 5,000 subscribers on YouTube, one of those lucky subscribers will win the contents of the vault, which at last count is valued at more than 9 ETH (~$10,400).
Until next time, see you in the Metaverse.