Iconic Moments NFT Market Discussion with Chris Cummings
Chris Cummings is the founder and CEO of Iconic Moments, the NFT marketplace for the museum industry. Prior to founding Iconic Moments, Chris founded Pass It Down, an award-winning digital exhibition design platform that is transforming the way museums and cultural institutions engage their visitors. Chris explains what the Iconic Moments NFT marketplace is, the benefits and value of Iconic Moments NFT drops, and the pros and cons of posting existing art and story NFTs. It also delves into the blockchain they use, the early skepticism within the cultural institutions and organizations they work with, and much more.
ADM: What makes Iconic Moments different from similar marketplaces? What will Iconic Moments drops bring to the table that others don’t?
Cumming: Other NFT markets have their value, but the coins we sell have history and history. We wanted to make sure the information was shared with the NFT itself. We built Iconic Moments to feel like a museum gallery, showcasing artistic or historical moments in a less cluttered way.
ADM: Some people may say that NFTs (and crypto in general) are risky investments because of their volatility. Is this a particular concern for Iconic Moments? How do Iconic Moments’ NFTs counter this?
Cumming: I’m not sure there are any investments that don’t involve risk. Iconic Moments NFTs are like digital lithographs that directly support the cultural institution that houses the asset. By purchasing an NFT from Iconic Moments, you become a patron of this institution and join a community with similar interests.
ADM: What are the benefits and value of purchasing one of Iconic Moments’ NFT drops?
Cumming: In addition to supporting a cultural institution and owning a digital asset, each Iconic Moments NFT includes different utilities, including access to special events, private discord channels, discounts on museum tickets, merchandise, etc
ADM: Why are NFTs the best way to “save cultural institutions”?
Cumming: Everyone has a different opinion on this, but Iconic Moments, it’s important to us that these museums, archives and other institutions can stay open and share their collection with people. Ultimately, museums are places of learning, holding our collective history.
COVID threatened many institutions with closure. We want cultural institutions to remain open and their assets to be accessible to the public to enjoy and learn from.
ADM: What blockchain do you use and why?
Cumming: We’re launching on Ethereum because that’s where most of the NFT communities are right now. When we talk about Iconic Moments NFTs, we are actually talking about building a community.
ADM: What has been the response within the cultural institutions and organizations that Iconic Moments works with? Was there skepticism at first?
Cumming: Initially there was some skepticism, but other projects have shared how NFTs can benefit institutions while honoring the art/artist. Some examples of these projects are TIME’s TIMEPieces release in September 2021 and Belvedere’s NFT release of Gustav Klimt’s The Kiss in February 2022.
The Iconic Moments team is full of museum expertise and cultural institutions. It helps that we can see things from their perspective and act as partners along the way. Although there was skepticism at first, museums and archives are eager to begin their NFT drops. Every week we receive exciting emails filled with the coolest historic photos and stories that institutions can’t wait to share.
ADM: Many NFTs are created solely for the purpose of the NFT. Walk us through the pros and cons of posting NFTs of “iconic moments,” meaning works of art and history that already exist.
Cumming: I don’t want to undermine any other NFT projects: we’ve seen a lot of talented artists posting work and we continue to be impressed with the NFT community. Usually, in this case, only one digital asset exists.
However, many of the NFTs we see created are speculative and very time-based. At Iconic Moments, we deal with timeless historical moments and art. By purchasing any of Iconic Moments digital assets, you directly support the museum that houses the physical artwork.
ADM: Will the drops only be NFTs of the existing artwork/historical moment? If not, what else will they understand?
Cumming: Currently we are working on existing artwork and drops of historical moments. Since so much of an institution’s records are in the vault, many of our NFTs have never been seen before.
ADM: What’s next for Iconic Moments? Future projects that excite you?
Cumming: The market is changing rapidly and we are constantly seeing innovations, so I don’t want to name any future plans yet. I will say that one of the things we are most excited about is building decentralized community NFT purchases.
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