Existing in Etherium: The autographic ontology of NFT artwork

Elizabeth Kovacs

Institute of Certified Specialists

Cite: Kovacs E. Existing in Etherium: The autographic ontology of NFT artwork. J. Digit. Art Humanit., 2(2), 61-66. https://doi.org/10.33847/2712-8148.2.2_5

Abstract. This paper examines the concept that legitimate autographic identity may be granted to digital images created as a non-fungible token (NFT). The blockchain technology coded permanently into minted NFT’s keep track of the legitimacy of authorship and ownership, keeping them from being duplicated and removing them from the realm of allographic art. Questions arise of what ‘legitimacy’ and ‘ownership’ for a digital image—which are so easily reproduced and circulated—even look like. The main question that must be answered is whether the backend coding of a digital file is sufficient to alter its ontology into a token of one-of-a-kind autographic work, or if it only what is visible to the viewer of the image matters for its replicability and allographic ontological natures.

Keywords: Digital art, non-fungible token, blockchain technology, digital image, authorship, ownership, crypto art, digital artwork, allographic.


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Published online 29.12.2021