Genuine Inquiry 013

Art, NFTs & Democracy









Owen Kelly



January 14, 2022




Ellis Brooks wrote an article on Medium claiming that “NFTs Are Critical for the Future of Art”. Owen Kelly inquires into the premises of her argument and the remedy she proposes.

He argues that using blockchain technology to authenticate digital artworks will create many more problems than those it set out to solve. He also argues that the problem, as defined in the article, raises complex issues and we should not therefore take it at face value. In fact the opposite: we should interrogate it and see what lies behind it.

Blockchain technology can in principle work to support a digital commons but its current goal seems almost the opposite: to turn every aspect of living into a tradeable asset and every aspect of our living into something we can (and should) buy and sell.