Justin Aversano and Twin Flames #49 Make History with 871 ETH Sale
The sale makes Aversano one of the world's most valuable photographers
Twin Flames #49 by Justin Aversano
To say that Justin Aversano has had quite the year would be an understatement. His Twin Flames project, which is widely considered to be the first major NFT photography collection, has broken too many records to count. When he and I first spoke in May of this year, the floor for the project sat between 3-5 ETH.
In this story, we'll be discussing the sale that took place last week for an earth-shattering 850 ETH. You read that right. The sale catapults Justin into the ranks of some of the highest-selling photographers of all time, and the proceeds from the sale will all go into the RAWdao vault to empower the next generation of NFT photographers.
The First Sale
When I first spoke to Justin earlier this year, he told me he initially had no intention to sell #49, as it was one of the most personally valuable to him in the collection. In the weeks that followed, Justin was selected by the community to fulfill lot 28 in the forthcoming Sotheby's Natively Digital sale. He elected to use image #49 for this purpose, as he intended to donate all of the proceeds to SevensGrant, an organization putting money back into the photography community.
The piece sold for $35,280, and all of that money went to Sevens. On the decision, Justin tells me: "I was chosen by the community, I gave it back to the community."
The Second Sale
This catalyzed the position of #49 as the "community twin" in the collection of 100 images. The anonymous buyer who bought it at Sotheby's for roughly 14 ETH decided to fractionalize ownership of the twin and set the reserve price to 500 ETH.
It met the reserve and sold on August 30th for 506 ETH to Luiz, one of the founders of the FingerprintsDAO. 506 ETH is a bit north of $2.3 million (at the time of writing), for those keeping score at home.
Fingerprints and Justin then came up with the idea to conduct a party bid for the next sale. A party bid is essentially the opposite of fractional ownership. Everyone contributes an amount towards the bid before it is owned, as opposed to fractional ownership, where people buy into ownership of an asset.
The Third Sale: History is Made, Again
Justin initially set the reserve to 1,000 ETH, and from the get go the plan was to use the earnings to pay it forward and support 1,000 photographers with the vaulted ETH.
The reserve was lowered a bit after the first week, and the community raised a whopping 888 ETH to bid on the image. 600+ people were involved in the party bid, and all contributed 1 ETH or more. It sold for 871 ETH. Based on the price of ETH at the time of this writing, that's just above $4 million USD. Remember in June when it sold for $35k?
This is where it gets really good. 850 ETH from the sale has gone directly into the RAWdao treasury, with the intent to reinvest all of the money back into the photography space.
It's easy to get wrapped up in jaw-dropping sales that go right into the pockets of faceless developers or investors, but Justin has managed to cultivate an entire NFT photography community around giving back.
I was chosen by the community, I gave it back to the community.
- Justin Aversano
This is the ethos that should drive the entire NFT space. When Justin wins, the community wins. There's a reason we say "wagmi" and not "iagmi."
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