Selfridges Becomes The First Retailer To Sell Brick and Mortar NFTs

The NFT craze is still going strong, as more brands are joining in on the trend in early 2022. Selfridges, a British department store, is one of the latest to jump on the trend as they pave the way for claiming to be the world’s first retailer to sell over-the-counter NFTs

The retailer’s entry into the metaverse begins with their launch of the sale of rare artworks by Victor Vasarely, a trailblazer in the 20th century Op Art movement, to celebrate the 25th anniversary of his death. His works have included the design for David Bowie’s Space Oddity album cover and Zebras, his most famous painting for 1937. Vasarely’s Selfridges exhibition called “Universe”, is set to include 55 of his rare artworks that haven’t been shown in more than 50 years. Thirty-seven of his physical pieces will also be on sale during the exhibition. All of the funds raised will go to the Foundation Vasarely Museum in Aix-en-Provence, France. 

Victor Vasareky artwork
Victor Vasarely, Okta cor, 1973 Fabrice Lepeltier

Selfridges announced that they will be selling these fixed-price NFTs in its London store starting Jan. 28, 2022. More than 1,800 NFTs will be on sale, ranging in price from $2,700 to $137,000, and customers can purchase them using their bank cards, according to Ad Week

Virtual Meets Physical 

Substance, a London-based NFT platform, created the NFTs being sold at Selfridges. To go along with the exhibit, Substance also made a virtual reality environment on the online platform Decentraland where visitors can virtually interact with Vasarely’s artworks. 

Selfridge’s NFT project also commemorates the launch of fashion brand Paco Rabanne’s Spring Summer 2022 collection, which is partly inspired by Vasarely’s artwork. The collection was first unveiled last June and is now being released for purchase. The retail store will be displaying 55 of the artist’s works within its 24 store-front windows and other places throughout the store. 

“As Selfridges looks to the future, we continue to find inspiration in the past. … I love the idea of bringing Vasarely’s art to a social space like Selfridges— alongside the distinct identity of Paco Rabanne—and using their vision as way to bring emotion, connection and accessibility to the experience,” said Sebastian Manes, the executive buyer and merchandise director of Selfridges. 

A few of the retailer’s NFTs will include the first 12 dresses Rabanne created at the start of his career. This is the beginning of a truly exciting movement where art, fashion, and technology all collaborate together to celebrate the Op Art icon. 

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