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In an online auction on Friday, a one-of-a-kind digital rendition of the Nyan Cat meme from 2011 sold for around $590,000. As cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin have risen in value, online sales of nonfungible tokens, or NFTs, have exploded in recent weeks. NFT art goods, which act as a form of digital asset or token, have sold for more than $3.5 million in some cases, leading to a crypto art market worth more than $100 million. Nyan Cat’s owner, Chris Torres, said the NFT sale was his first foray into crypto art.
“I’m very surprised by the performance,” Torres told Nasdaq, “but I guess I’m most glad that I’ve essentially opened the door to a whole new meme economy in the crypto world.”
For its 10-year anniversary, Torres remastered the original animated GIF and hosted a 24-hour auction on the crypto art site Foundation on Thursday.
The platform has only been live for two weeks and allows artists like Torres to continue to benefit from their work if a buyer later resells it for a higher price.
Bids for the Nyan Cat began at 3 Ether (ETH), or approximately $1,544.38, and ended at 300 ETH, or approximately $590,000.
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On the internet, almost anything is possible! Even the most bizarre ideas can go viral in a matter of hours, as the cat caught in a pop-tart that is floating across the sky and leaving a trail of rainbows demonstrates. Oh, and there’s a catchy meowing song in the background, too!
With the Rainbow Cat Papercraft, you can make your own version of the internet sensation using colored sheets of paper. All you’ll need is a pair of scissors, some glue, and some patience. You’ll be tearing around your apartment with your new pet, meowing as loudly as possible, in minutes.
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The cat was diagnosed with Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP), a fatal and incurable illness, when he was nearly three years old. Marty was adopted by Chris Torres, the founder of Nyan Pet, in 2010 along with another cat, Buster, who died of FIP shortly after.
Nyan Cat turned one year old in April, and it has outlasted the bulk of Internet memes. The 8-bit rainbow Pop Tart cat’s adorably infectious song continues to thrill the masses — and will no doubt be performed in Marty’s honor for a long time to come.
Nyan cat meme (gift)
Nyan Cat, arguably 2011’s most famous cat meme, has resurfaced in the news this week after a digital reproduction of the artwork was sold for 300 ether. That was worth just under $600,000 at the time of the Friday sale.
Welcome to the wild world of non-fungible tokens (NFTs), which are one-of-a-kind digital objects that are verified on the blockchain and sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars. Artists are selling NFTs on sites like Rarible and Foundation, the latter of which is where Nyan Cat’s founder sold the most recent version of his famous cat.
Cryptokitties were cats on the Ethereum network, as the name suggests. The game of breeding, buying, selling, and hodling cats became so popular at one point that it slowed down the Ethereum network.
People are minting and selling all sorts of NFTs, including the “E. Honda gif” that Jay Caspian Kang, a New Yorker contributor and co-host of the CoinTalk podcast, recently sold for over $500 in ether.