The NFT Louvre exhibition that wasn’t: unraveling the public disorder of a non-event

On Monday, March 6, Claire Silvera well-regarded non-fungible token (NFT) artist who uses artificial intelligence (AI) in her work, excitedly announced on Twitter and via an exclusive article in Variety that she would be exhibiting her art at the Louvre Museum in Paris, France .

According to Variety, her work was going to be shown at the Louvre “courtesy of Superchief Gallery NFT” and would premiere on March 21. The “Superchief-Louvre show,” as Variety wrote, would be an exhibition of his latest collection called “can I tell you a secret,” which would be a series of 100 pieces created with AI.

Silver, whose work has been auctioned by Sotheby’s and exhibited in galleries around the world, also shared on Twitter that her unique NFT work “Love in the 4th Turning” will be exhibited at the Louvre.

The news drew praise and support from artists and collectors across the NFT space, who saw the exhibition as a sign of how digital art is gaining legitimacy in the traditional art world. . Other museums, including Pompidou Center in Paristhe British Museum and the New York Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) recently embraced NFT art, so an exhibition at the Louvre initially seemed plausible.

Still, Silver’s announcement was immediately met with online skepticism from members of the mainstream art space – some have suggested the exhibition is likely to be held at the Carrousel du Louvre, an underground shopping mall near the Louvre Museum. , while others have cruelly hinted that Silver was duped by Unrealistic Expectations.

On Friday, March 10, the Louvre confirmed that Silver would not be exhibiting there, prompting an outpouring of support for Silver from disappointed NFT enthusiasts who wondered how this embarrassing mix-up had come about.

A case of miscommunication?

When the Louvre finally set the record straight, Silver published (and soon after deleted) his version of events. Later, she tweeted that she was “not sure who twisted things”.

Gallery of Superchefsthe NFT art gallery which helped facilitate the exhibition of Claire’s work, also released a lengthy statement on Twitter share his version of events. He said attendees at Paris Blockchain Week, a blockchain summit to be held at the Carrousel du Louvre later this month, lied about the details of the exhibit.

“They told us that Paris Blockchain Week had rented (“privatized”) the Louvre Museum. They said that the Louvre Museum had event rental space, for the conference, and that they were delighted that we are coming as an ‘artistic partner’,” Superchief Gallery said in its statement.

Shortly after, Superchief Gallery said its reps called Silver to share the news. The gallery argues that Paris Blockchain Week “did not represent the details and facts of this meeting, or any meeting we had afterward”, only learning of the confusion on Twitter after the story of Silver’s exhibit went viral.

The Superchief Gallery claims in its press release that Paris Blockchain Week has over-promised. In the end, the gallery decided to cancel its participation in the event entirely.

Paris Blockchain Week shared a different version of events. The organizers told CoinDesk that the location of the event was clearly stated in the header and in the text of the contract they presented. CoinDesk was able to view the contract on Zoom to verify it.

“It would not have been in our interest to try to mislead in any way,” the organizers said.

The team said that in planning the details of the exhibit space, they did not speak to Silver directly.

“We’ve never heard of her. And she’s never heard of us,” they said, adding that in light of the incident, they had recently reached out to Silver and offered to work together. next year.

They shared that while the conference as a whole was being held at the Carrousel du Louvre, a fact that is splashed across their digital marketing materials, they plan to host a private VIP dinner inside the Louvre Museum, although ‘they say it was never initially discussed with Silver or the third-party agency organizing on its behalf. They claimed that the organization of the event came with “very strict rules” and that they had been “extremely attentive” to the images and texts used to promote this event.

Posts reviewed by CoinDesk suggest that Paris Blockchain Week representatives discussed the private VIP event inside the Louvre Museum days after Silver shared news of the exhibit.

“It was only after the Louvre contacted Claire that the agency began discussions about how Claire’s works could be exhibited at any time that could be considered inside the Louvre Museum – in desperation. We searched for solutions to try to accommodate, but without knowing the full extent of the promises that had already been made to Claire by the agent.”

A spokesperson for global talent agency William Morris Endeavor (WME), which represents Silver, told Variety in a statement that “it is unfortunate that a third party has misrepresented the details of this opportunity to our client Claire Silver. We fully support Claire and believe she acted with integrity throughout this process.

It is unclear if miscommunication occurred at any point during the negotiation process. The first informal conversations about the opportunity took place at another event in Paris last month. However, the official contract was not signed between the two parties until after Silver’s public announcement.

In the end, it appears that neither Paris Blockchain Week nor the Superchief Gallery intended to deliberately mislead Silver or the public. Neither side would have won in the long run by lying about something that was so easily refuted, only to damage Silver’s reputation in the art world.

The Artist’s Burden

Many people on social media have come to Silver’s defense, noting that there are often complex dynamics involving artists, agents, galleries, brokers and museums. In the end, it seems artists feel the brunt of perceived failures, no matter who else was involved or what happened behind the scenes.

“The success of a gallery is measured by the success of its artists, and the success of artists is determined by complex measures of approval: What important museum exhibitions have they participated in? What biennials? Good collectors have they understand?” wrote ARTNews in 2020.

I can only imagine. Being on the business side of working with artists, this is a very tragic but not entirely uncommon occurrence. Your answer is well thought out, and you’ve earned a following and respect from me. Sending you all the good vibes 💚

— 𝔹ℝ𝔸ℕ𝔻𝕆ℕ 𝔽ℝ𝔸ℕ𝕂𝔼𝕃 (@brandontour) March 10, 2023

I respect his work.

It is very likely that he will be lied to, which often happens for pumping.

I lost a lot of artist friends who didn’t care about lies and deceptive public relations, mostly because of profit.

— ᴊᴏᴀɴɪᴇ ʟᴇᴍᴇʀᴄɪᴇʀ (@JoanieLemercier) March 10, 2023

You can mute or block those people who only give you negativity.
Anyone can make a mistake or be exploited in this space. Either they intentionally misinformed you or they got backlash for putting an AI artist in the Louvre because the hate is real. Ultimately, they can…

— Eclectika 🏳️‍🌈 (@Eclectika_12) March 13, 2023

Claire told CoinDesk that she took a step back from the situation to preserve her well-being.

“I’m way off my depth and retired accordingly. Things went wrong on every level, and I was naive and flying too close to the sun to figure out the problem myself.”

She explained that she had reason to believe the exhibit at the Louvre was legitimate – she noted that the Louvre is closed to the public on Tuesdays and that the proposed exhibit would have been on a Tuesday. “I’ve seen artists use the museum as a setting for music videos and the like, so it made sense to me that an exhibition would be possible on a Tuesday,” she said.

Ultimately, she said she didn’t blame any of the parties involved in the crash. “I respect what (Paris Blockchain Week) does for digital artists, and I would have loved exhibiting at (Carrousel du Louvre) if it was in a different context. I also deeply respect and am extremely grateful to Superchief for fighting stronger for collaborative AI artists than anyone in space.”

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.


Not all news on the site expresses the point of view of the site, but we transmit this news automatically and translate it through programmatic technology on the site and not from a human editor.
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