TIME Magazine is auctioning three non-fungible tokens inspired by some of its most iconic covers from the past few decades, marking its first foray into the world of crypto art. The three NFTs will be sold separately and as a collection on the digital-art training platform, SuperRare.
The selection of NFTs is based on the theme “Is ___ Dead?”, which is a reference to a series of provocative typological covers inspired by TIME’s original April 8, 1966 version Is God Dead? The cover which sparked controversy and debate among thousands of readers is iconic for being the first in the magazine’s history to include only typography with no graphics or images, according to the magazine. The realted text was written by the publication’s religion editor John Elson who expressed at the time that the title “is a question that tantalizes both believers, who perhaps secretly fear that he is, and atheists, who possibly suspect the answer is no.”
The second cover, unveiled April 3, 2017, posed the question: Is Truth Dead? related to the first presidential year of Donald Trump. Editor Nancy Gibbs took her cue and followed: “Just like many said they believed in god in 1966, many today would say they believe in truth, and yet we find ourselves having an intense debate over its role and power in the face of a president who treats it like a toy. What does he actually believe? Does it count as lying if he believes what he says?”
The last cover is concerned with the huge decline in the purchasing power of government-controlled currencies such as the U.S. dollar, and asks “Is Fiat Dead?” Unveiled amid the NFT and cryptocurrencies’ rise in popularity, TIME creative director D. W. Pine said about the cover he designed: “I love the idea that its meaning isn’t clear to the casual viewer — much like the crazy, lucrative world of NFTs.”
All three NFTs are currently up for auction on SuperRare until March 24 at 8 p.m. EST. A minimum price of 10 Ether, or roughly $18,000, has been set for each cover.