Even robots are participating in the NFT campaign that has taken the online art world by storm in recent months. Perhaps the most famous humanoid robot in the world, Sophia sold a self-portrait of herself as an NFT for $ 688 million at an online auction. Sophia made an interpretation of her own face for the digital art in question. It was then flipped and auctioned as a non-replaceable token.
Maybe you’ve heard the term NFT floating around on social media and have no idea what that is. It is a non-replaceable token, which is basically an encrypted digital signature that allows digital art to be bought and traded. The NFT is rapidly changing the art market and the way its presence works online.
Artist and partner at blockchain investment firm Eterna Capital, Andrea Bonaceto teamed up with Sophia the Robot to create the self-portrait. Bonaceto first made a brightly colored portrait of Sophia. This was then processed through Sophia’s neural networks, allowing the robot to paint an interpretation of the image it was seeing.
Hanson Robotics is responsible for creating Sophia the Robot. The Hong Kong-based company gained worldwide fame when they introduced Sophia to the public and showcased her conversational skills and realistic movements. Sophia can also make quite a few facial expressions. The robot was first activated in 2016. Since then, it has been featured on numerous talk shows around the world. She is also known for speaking at conferences and has since acquired Saudi Arabian citizenship. This makes Sophia the very first robot with a nationality.
The self-portrait painting of Sophia the Robot was made without human assistance. And the decisions she made in creating the artwork were all of her own. This claim comes from the NFT market responsible for selling Sophia’s art, Nifty Gateway.
NFTs provide digital artists and photographers with a way to verify and verify ownership of videos and images, and this has created a chain reaction in the artwork, with the value of digital art suddenly skyrocketing. Before NFTs, most digital art could be easily replicated and redistributed without permission from the artist or the owner of the art. This is the main reason why NFTs have become so valuable and groundbreaking since early 2021.
Nifty Gateway claims Sophia’s self-portrait is just one of many collaborations with the robot yet to come. It is noted that Sophia will have her own solo art exhibition at the IV Gallery in Los Angeles soon this year.
The original physical self-portrait, entitled ‘Sophia Instantiation’, was included in one auction lot with the 12 second video clip offered as an NFT, in which the portrait of Andrea Bonaceto transforms into the art that Sophia created all by herself. At the same time, other art of the robot was also offered for sale. Some of the digital images auctioned as NFTs include portraits of its creators, including Hanson Robotics founder David Hanson and AI researcher Ben Goertzel.
Sophia’s self-portrait was sold as a single edition, but some of the robot’s other works were sold in editions of 30 for $ 2.5,000 to $ 3,000 each. The sale grossed over $ 1 million when all was said and done.