Musée d’Orsay Partners with the Tezos Foundation for NFTs

Credit: Musee d'Orsay

The Musée d’Orsay is embracing Web3 and NFT technology.

On Friday, the Parisian museum that houses the largest collection of Impressionist masterpieces in the world, announced it‘s partnered up with the Tezos Foundation to bring blockchain-backed artworks and on-chain digital artists to the historic institution.

The partnership is kicking off with NFT souvenirs for visitors to its upcoming exhibition: “Van Gogh in Auversur-Oise: The Final Months.” The exhibition, which is an exploration into the works of Van Gogh during his final months, will open to the public on October 3rd.

Two digital artworks have been created for the exhibition. They include an augmented reality (AR) work of van Gogh’s last palette and an original digital artwork that was created by the French blockchain culture project KERU. Both NFTs will be minted on the Tezos blockchain.

Holders of the NFTs will be eligible to win special prizes, including invitations to exhibitions and galas at the museum and a lifetime pass to the Orsay. In total, 2,300 NFTs of each artwork will be minted for the price of €20, or around $21.

According to the news, the Tezos Foundation and the Orsay will also collaborate on a series of conferences discussing nascent technologies, with a focus on educating their audience about blockchain tech. Sometime in 2024, the museum will invite prominent digital artists to create NFTs inspired by the Orsay’s permanent collection.

The Tezos Foundation and the Orsay also collaborated with TriliTech, a UK-based adoption hub, to build its Web3-related initiatives. According to Valerie Whitacre, the Head of Art at the company, embracing Web3 and digital art is perfectly in sync with the museum’s history of of collecting work from artists who “might not have otherwise been accepted by traditionalists.”

Like many museums around the world, the Orsay saw a significant drop in visitors during the pandemic. This is when it first started considering Web3 and digital initiatives. Although it has rebounded nicely since it then, it hopes its partnership with the Tezos Foundation can help expose younger generations to its vast collection of works.

Museums Around the World Turn to Web3

The move from one of the most important museums in the world to partner with a Web3 company to offer NFTs is exciting for the space. But the Musée d’Orsay isn’t the only museum that’s been innovating with nascent technologies in recent months and years.

At Rarity Sniper, we’ve covered several stories about top museums embracing Web3 in order to bring in alternative revenue streams, and perhaps more importantly, reach younger, digitally-native populations. Below are some of the headlines over the past few years about museums in Web3.

It can’t be denied that the initial pivot into Web3 by leading museums was inspired by the pandemic. However, at this point, it appears museums are embracing NFT technology for other reason, such as its appeal to the youth, its potential to reach an unlimited audience, and its capacity to better compensate artists.

The move from the Musée d’Orsay is not only huge news for the Web3 space, but for the traditional art world as well, which not too long ago, was hesitant to embrace the new technologies. At Rarity Sniper, we’ll be on the lookout for any updates to the story.