JOHN YUYI, Times Square, New York, 2021

The hype surrounding NFTs and NFT marketplaces has caused digital art to be seen precisely there: at NFT marketplaces. Before that hype, digital art was reserved for experts and tech nerds ahead of their time, but since Beeple reached a new auction record at Christie’s in the spring of 2021, digital art has caught up with classic art forms such as painting and sculpture, which used to dominate the art market. One file – a collage consisting of 5000 single pieces from the oeuvre of artist Mike Winkelmann aka Beeple – was sold for more than 69 million dollars. That got everybody’s attention. All of a sudden, news outlets from The New York Times to the Stuttgarter Nachrichten tried to explain NFTs and the technical revolution sending the art market into a flurry. 69 million dollars for a JPG? 590,000 dollars for a cat meme? 700,000 dollars for the self portrait of a robot?


Someone with a background in classical music who’s never heard cloud rap will inevitably be irritated. Someone who doesn’t know what to make of Bad Painting might think they could do the same in no time. And now, there’s digital art, with a context and history similar to Bad Painting or cloud rap, but a scope basically as wide as the medium of painting. Flying cats, painting robots, monumental collages, GIFs, videos, JPGs: A whole new world is opening up, and after the NFT hype, this new world is turning much faster than the one we used to know. NFTs are being sold at Art Basel; Sotheby’s has opened Decen- traland in the Metaverse; and Time mag- azine has a 6000 member-strong com- munity on Discord. Discord? Metaverse? Decentraland? For crypto natives, events and developments can’t come fast enough, while non-crypto natives must learn the NFT space like a new lan- guage. My favorite comment on Discord, a social network reminiscent of a 90s message board: “Boomer.” I had to stop and think for a moment. Then I asked: “You mean US dollars?” “Yes.”

So, what do you do about it? You impart art its history. You give people access to art and NFTs. You build bridges between the traditional world of art and the crypto community. When you do this as a joint effort, the moon won’t seem as far out of reach – because that’s exactly where those in the NFT space are head- ing, metaphorically speaking.

"Over eight weeks, PORSCHE × KÖNIG will turn some of the biggest screens into GLOBAL GALLERY digital exhibition spaces.”
KENNEDY+SWAN, Nostalgae, NFT 2021


Porsche and KÖNIG have joined forces to give young artists a stage and make digital art accessible. According to the German Museums Association, five per- cent of people visit museums, but there are no reliable visitor numbers for NFT marketplaces yet. However, we all walk through cities and subway stations full of screens seen by millions each day. Over eight weeks, PORSCHE × KÖNIG will turn some of the biggest screens into GLOBAL GALLERY digital exhibi- tion spaces: New York’s Times Square, Madrid’s Callao Square, Tokyo’s Shibuya Crossing, Seoul’s K-Pop Square, and the “Berlin Times Square,” the Sony Center at Potsdamer Platz. A commuter getting off of a Berlin subway will walk directly into the GLOBAL GALLERY, e.g. at Friedrichstraße, Alexanderplatz, Zoologischer Garten, Ku’damm, or Potsdamer Platz.

For weeks, videos by the eleven artists have been edited for the screens in the five different cities, animations have been created, video portraits shot, interviews conducted, and photos taken. On October 9th, at midnight German time, the GLOBAL GALLERY went live for an hour on what is probably the world’s most famous screen: Times Square. While Johann König joined via an Instagram livestream, artists Jon Burgerman, John Yuyi and Nicole Ruggiero were on site, excited, nervous and in disbelief about their art being exhibited at one of the world’s most iconic places. Even livestream users could feel the pumped atmosphere.

Ferry Porsche once said: “Those lucky enough to build a business out of a dream owe it to the world to be the caretakers of dreams.” Ever since then, Porsche has been working relentlessly
to realize dreams. This can be achieved and therefore also visualized in many different ways: a cow standing in the ocean, apparently enjoying the view (Jonas Lund); a beetle surrounded by screens dancing like nobody’s watching (kennedy+swan); a little figure navigating around over-dimensional splashes of color in a dream-like scene (Manuel Rossner).
JON BURGERMAN Camouflage, NFT, 2021


The GLOBAL GALLERY makes digital art visible where you would least expect it, but where it fits in best: the public space. The sale of these works of art is equally accessible: QR codes on the screens direct users to misa.art, an online marketplace powered by KÖNIG, where the NFTs will be available as open editions for 100 and 250 euros until December 7, 2021. The GLOBAL GALLERY makes digital art accessible to all, offline and online.

© Words Anika Meier