Micah Johnson, an artist, and former baseball player will begin selling the final chapter of his Non-fungible token (NFT) character Aku through Bonhams and Nifty Gateway on Monday, marking the one-year anniversary of the character’s debut.
The offering will be open editions, which means that the number of tokens manufactured will be determined by the number of purchases. Bidding begins at US$999 per person.
Johnson, 31, claims he was inspired by a personal encounter to develop the character Aku, a small child with an oversized space helmet. The NFTs are a character’s 3-D animation.
“A small boy’s query, ‘Could astronauts be black?’ inspired my physical paintings.” “I wanted to create a figure that might reach a bigger audience after witnessing collectors relate with my aim to prove everything is possible,” he says.
The 10-part series of Aku NFTs has generated over US$19 million in total sales to date.
“I’m really proud of everything we’ve accomplished in terms of plot across the chapters. “Without Aku speaking a word, we told a story,” Johnson adds.
From 2012 to 2018, Johnson was a member of the Chicago White Sox, Los Angeles Dodgers, and Atlanta Braves of Major League Baseball. After retiring from the sport, he opened an art studio in New Hampshire, where he created both physical and digital pieces on canvas.
“You have to fall in love with the process and practice more than the outcomes in both disciplines.” “I can see a tangible improvement in art the more I work at it, and that’s what I like about it,” he says.
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A full-length feature film based on the NFT character Aku has been optioned for traditional distribution. Johnson says that while he can’t reveal any information about the film just yet, his ultimate objective is for Aku to be the next generation’s Mickey Mouse.
On February 16-17, the NFT will be on display at the Bonhams Los Angeles store at 7575 Sunset Blvd before being offered for sale on Nifty Gateway.
According to Nima Sagharchi, head of digital art at Bonhams, the two companies will collaborate throughout the year in a series of NFT drops and events around the world.
“Micah Johnson’s Aku Saga is particularly poignant because it allows collectors to become immersed in a dramatic continuous narrative, and it wonderfully represents the ‘community effect,’ which makes NFT’s so fascinating,” explains Sagharchi.