British artist Lincoln Townley, whom veteran actor Michael Caine calls “The next Andy Warhol,” has sold a collection of paintings for cryptocurrencies via the WeChat messaging app, Express.co.uk reports. The sale took place in a single weekend, raising an undisclosed amount for the artist whose works are owned by celebrities such as Al Pacino, Samuel Jackson, Sting, and Ronaldinho.
This is not the first time Townley has used unorthodox ways to monetize his work. As he told Express.co.uk, “I’m always looking at ways to do things differently in my route to market,” adding that galleries are secondary to an artist’s success, and there are so many other ways to sell with technology. He claims he is building a community of art lovers who contact him directly through social media, thus cutting out intermediaries.
While agreeing that people who invest in Bitcoin are speculators, Townley went on to note:
“But that’s why I thought to myself, these are the sort of people that would be interested in purchasing my art as an extension to their investment portfolio. They are looking for a tangible asset they can put this newfound currency into.”
Commenting on the fluctuating Bitcoin price, Townley said he was optimistic the value would only continue to rise.
“I think there is a huge market for expansion, with it being something that is going to inflate in value. Therefore, inflating in value will give you more of a vehicle to purchase art in the future,” he commented.
The former night club promoter is a self-taught artist whose works have been exhibited in The National Gallery, The Royal Academy, Somerset House, The Saatchi Gallery, and The Brisbane Powerhouse, among others. While Townley favors digital sales, some of his paintings can be bought from galleries at prices ranging from 29,000 pounds and 240,000 pounds, according to Artnet.