Pantone, a company known to artists and homemakers as one of the biggest authorities in color, has announced they are celebrating this year’s selection for Color Of The Year, PANTONE® 17-3938 by releasing their first ever NFT collection through a giveaway on Instagram.
The collection, which features nine unique NFTs created by Paris-based digital artist Polygon1993, utilizes Pantone’s “Very Peri” blue to capture humans and other scenes in lo-fi digital renditions—emblematic of the artist’s retro-futurist style.
The color, which Pantone describes as highlighting “personal inventiveness and creativity” makes a natural fit for the company’s first foray into digital art. The blue shade evokes the glow from a computer screen, and Pantone even goes as far as to say the colors undertones are “best rendered on high-definition screens and in 3D.”
Worth noting, Pantone has decided to forgo the corporate norm of minting on the Ethereum blockchain in favor of using Tezos, which they repeatedly describe as “eco-friendly.” And indeed, while popular platforms like OpenSea and Decentraland have driven Ethereum NFT dominance, increasing gas fees and environmental concerns have led a growing number of companies such as Gap GPS -0.7%, Ubisoft and Red Bull to instead mint on Tezos, whose Proof-of-Stake consensus mechanism uses an estimated 26,000% less energy than Ethereum.
As energy prices rise, and corporations look to mitigate costs (and score good PR), a switch to a Tezos or other PoS networks could become more common.
The company’s decision to give away the NFTs for free also could demonstrate a shift in how companies try and capitalize on the NFT craze. While companies like Nike NKE -0.7% have used NFTs as an additional revenue stream, Pantone’s foray appears to be brand building in nature, which could be turn out to be a good decision in an NFT market where prices have dropped dramatically.
With digital art becoming ever more present, having newly created colors wrapped in NFTs could soon be commonplace. Hex NFT is a newly launched project whose roadmap advertises itself as the “first blockchain of color”, allowing users to create and mint their own color as NFTs. The Color Museum is a Web3 collective that goes one step further, allows users to not only mint and but then collect royalties on any NFT that uses their color, on a dollars-for-pixel basis.
The downside here for Pantone is that corporate sponsored art tends to fight a headwind compared to other digital art. When skincare brand NIVEA recently launched a similar free NFT giveaway for their “Value of Touch” campaign—including a heartfelt message about the value of human touch for the visually impaired, and a design by Italian artist, Clarissa Baldassarri—the artwork generated little buzz, and each piece is currently only worth .0009 ETH ($2.47 at the time of this publication).
However, unlike Nivea, Pantone has the benefit of already being widely utilized and accepted in the artist community, with some 3.3 million followers on Instagram.
While this is Pantone’s first foray into NFTs it’s likely not the last. According to Laurie Pressman, Vice President of the Pantone Color Institute, Pantone is “always looking to the future…As our clients spend more and more time in the digital world, we recognize the influence this is having on the colors our clients are looking for and the tools they need to design and communicate”. How additional color NFTs will affect the resale price of existing color art remains to be seen.
Those interested in trying to scoop up one of Pantone’s NFTs need only a Tezos wallet, and to follow the company’s Instagram page, which will go live with a link for the first two NFTs at March 9th at 12pm EST. Another three will be released on March 10th at 7am EST (the final four are only available to festival goers at SXSW 2022 next week).
All online releases will occur through Objkt, the largest Tezos NFT marketplace.
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