Auction house in New Zealand tells NFT winning bidders to smash original artwork

Charles Goldie portrait of Maori warrior
Colorized portrait of Maori warrior and chief Te Aho-o-te-Rangi Wharepu (1811 - 1910) (Image credit: Charles Goldie / Archive Farms / Getty Images)

An art gallery in New Zealand has reportedly offered some bizarre advice to the winners of two glass plate portraits. The sale included ownership of the non-fungible tokens (NFTs) of each photo, as well as the original plates – but a small brass hammer was also included with each. Could this be a risky stunt pulled by the auction house to bring it more interest, or a genuine suggestion to make the NFTs more valuable?

In the last few months, we’ve seen a Nirvana photographer receive backlash for selling NFTs of the band and heard a rumor Instagram could be the next company to jump on the NFT bandwagon. But this latest stunt by Webb’s Auctioneers and Valuers could be the most troubling one yet as the head of art reportedly told the winning bidders to “Smash it”.

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Hannah Rooke
Staff Writer

Having studied Journalism and Public Relations at the University of the West of England Hannah developed a love for photography through a module on photojournalism. She specializes in Portrait, Fashion and lifestyle photography but has more recently branched out in the world of stylized product photography. For the last 3 years Hannah has worked at Wex Photo Video as a Senior Sales Assistant using her experience and knowledge of cameras to help people buy the equipment that is right for them. With 5 years experience working with studio lighting, Hannah has run many successful workshops teaching people how to use different lighting setups.