Behnood Javaherpour
“This “new'' digital art market offers a host of benefits - democratization, since anyone can access it via a screen; secure ownership recorded on the blockchain; more transparency; speedier payment to the artists as well as royalties paid on resale.” said Behnood Javaherpour, the brainchild behind Dubai’s first-ever Digital Islamic Art Agency BEHNOODE Art Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: Blockchains, fine art and investment opportunities are starting to show up in the UAE.

Dubai-based Behnood Javaherpour, founder of Behnoode Foundation, has launched what he says is the country’s first ‘Non-Fungible Token (NFT) digital Islamic art agency. The agency aims to “modernize the works of talented Middle Eastern artists and sell unique digital footprints through live auctions to collectors”.

The first NFT digital fine art auction under Behnoode Art is set for later this month and will include contemporary artworks. There will only be one piece created for each artwork from artists in the region.

“We are working and finalizing our affiliations with several Islamic banks and financial institutions, including investment companies to further create a community that values fine art while integrating modern technology.” said Behnoode.

The Behnoode Art Digital Islamic Art Agency
“Everydays — The First 5000 Days” is a collage of all the images that the artist known as Beeple has been posting online each day since 2007. The work set a record for a digital artwork, fetching $69.3 million. And that's how the NFT swept the art world. Image Credit: Supplied

So, what’s NFT?

Already winning wide acceptance among international investors, an NFT is a digital asset that represents real objects like art, music, in-game items and videos. They are bought and sold online through cryptocurrency, and encoded with the same underlying software as many cryptos. “One of the key benefits of digital art is it allows direct contact with buyers, bypassing the traditional gatekeepers,” said Behnood. “Additionally, digital art isn’t created, shipped and so on - so it’s also saving the planet.

“Under this agency, we are going to help artists understand the whole process of modernizing the artworks through NFT. Our team will prepare and guide each of them on successfully utilizing this new platform.”