Anne Spalter

Anne Spalter

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BRATTLEBORO — Digital artist and scholar Anne Spalter will explore NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, in a Zoom presentation titled “An Introduction to NFT Art,” hosted by the Brattleboro Museum & Art Center at 7 p.m. May 12.

Admission is free, with registration at brattleboromuseum.org.

According to a description provided by the musuem, NFTs have taken the art world by storm. In February 2021, collectors and speculators spent more than $200 million on NFT-based artwork, memes and GIFs, and that was before digital artist Mike Winkelmann, known as Beeple, sold a piece for $69 million at famed auction house Christie’s on March 11 — the third highest price ever fetched by a living artist, after Jeff Koons and David Hockney.

Spalter founded the original digital fine arts courses at Brown University and The Rhode Island School of Design and authored the textbook “The Computer in the Visual Arts.” New York City’s MTA Arts commissioned Spalter to create a 52-screen digital art installation for Fulton Center, one of its most crowded commuter hubs. Another recent project included a 47,000-square-foot LED video installation on the Hong Kong harbor. Spalter’s work is in the permanent collections of the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, the Rhode Island School of Design Museum and The Museum of CryptoArt, among others.

“New art media offer new opportunities for artistic expression,” Spalter said. “The invention of canvas led to portable paintings. The invention of paint in tubes led the Impressionists to work outdoors. Today a novel technology called the blockchain has made it possible for artists to create digital works (NFTs) that are purchased with cryptocurrencies and hosted potentially forever online. The economic and social environments of this new world are contributing to new ways of making, sharing, and collecting art.”

Founded in 1972, the Brattleboro Museum & Art Center presents rotating exhibits of contemporary art, complemented by lectures, artist talks, film screenings, and other public programs. The museum is open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday. Admission is on a “pay-as-you-wish” basis. The museum, in historic Union Station in downtown Brattleboro, at the intersection of Main Street and routes 119 and 142, is wheelchair accessible. For more information, call 802-257-0124 or visit brattleboromuseum.org.