Yuga Labs Is Inviting Owners of CryptoPunks to Purchase Physical Versions of Their NFTs at a 48-Hour Print Party

Sunday brunch would seem like an unlikely occasion to gather Web3 evangelists. But on October 1, one such event took place in Charleston, South Carolina. It was organized by two giants of the NFT universe, Beeple and Yuga Labs, and free to attend, so long as you owned a CryptoPunk.

The gathering, paired with Beeple’s purchase of the Joker-esque CryptoPunk #4593 in August, prompted speculation across Discord and X, formerly known as Twitter, that something new and daring was on the horizon.

That something is the release of physical edition prints of CryptoPunks. It’s a bold move for one of the progenitors of digital generative art — all the more so given Beeple is involved.

On October 26, Yuga Labs will open up a 48-hour window in which to print its pixelated faces. There are two events. The first, “Punk On Chain,” allows holders to obtain a physical version of their digital avatar for $640. The second, “10,000 On-Chain,” puts the full party of punks on a single 60-by-60 sheet and is available to anyone with an internet connection and $500 to spend.


An image of CryptoPunk #4112 in frame. Photo: courtesy Yuga Labs and Avant Arte.

Natalie Stone, CryptoPunks’s general manager, sees the release as a nod to its founding ethos. “Punks pre-date the concept of an NFT and speculative framing. They were infamously free to claim with the intention to be available and accessible to all,” she said. “The same can be said for printmaking, which has a history rooted in the mission of making great works of art widely available, and in turn, more valuable because it’s viewed and seen by more eyes.”

The physical venture arrives through a partnership with Avant Arte, a contemporary art marketplace aimed at making art more accessible (read: affordable). It has already solid Web3 cachet, having previously partnered with Nina Chanel Abney and the ubiquitous NFT collector Cozomo de’ Medici.

“CryptoPunks is an emblem for the crypto and Web3 movement,” Abigail Miller, Web3 Lead at Avant Arte said. “It’s a slice of Web3 history. Each print is made by our master printmakers in London and authenticated with both a physical and digital COA [certificate of authentication].”

Yuga Labs’s decision follows a trend of NFT projects flirting with physical editions. In May, Jack Butcher released handmade prints of his viral Checks series alongside retro printmaker Jean Robert Milant. Damien Hirst encouraged collectors to design and print out physical versions of his Spin NFTs. More recently, Dmitri Cherniak released prints from his seminal Ringers series, again in partnership with Avant Arte.

Detail of printed CryptoPunk #9474. Photo: courtesy Yuga Labs and Avant Arte.

It feels like something of a full circle moment. When NFTs gatecrashed the art world in Spring 2021, they promised a future in which art would be enjoyed as readily on screens as on white walls.

That future is more distant now. Steep cryptocurrency depreciation, a surplus of NFT projects, and countless scams have seen interest cool. What better reflection of this shift than Yuga Labs—arguably the most successful of NFT projects—succumbing to the simple pleasure of a silkscreen print and the hard reality of fiat currency.

More Trending Stories:  

An Elderly Couple Sold a ‘Worthless’ African Mask for $157. Now They Are Suing the Buyer Who Auctioned It for $4.4 Million 

A Norwegian Man Stumbled Upon a Trove of Gold Dating to the Early Middle Ages, Including a Rare Pendant Depicting the Norse God Odin 

A Top Antiquities Sleuth Has Called Out the Manhattan D.A. For Continually Passing His Work Off As Its Own 

Emerging Artist Li Hei Di Calls Her London Studio a ‘Parallel Universe,’ Where Hong Kong’s Cinematic Heroines and Mystical Abstraction Meet 

After Its Team-Up With Pokémon, Scalpers Swarm the Van Gogh Museum to Snap Up Merch and ‘Pick the Gift Shop Clean’ 

An Enigmatic Still-Life Picasso, Made During His Now-Celebrated ‘Wonder Year’ of 1932, Will Hit the Auction Block This Fall 

Get a Closer Look at Lagos-Based Artist Nengi Omuku’s Intricate Textile Paintings—Made on Traditional Nigerian Cloth 

A Mexican Journalist Went Viral After He Presented ‘Alien Bodies’ to Congress. Now He Is Accused of Plundering Them From Ancient Sites 

Follow Artnet News on Facebook:
Want to stay ahead of the art world? Subscribe to our newsletter to get the breaking news, eye-opening interviews, and incisive critical takes that drive the conversation forward.

Oh hi there 👋
It’s nice to meet you.

Sign up to receive awesome content in your inbox, everyday.

We don’t spam! Read our [link]privacy policy[/link] for more info.