After all, provenance and authenticity have always been big problems for collectors.
NFTs can potentially solve this, even without becoming the main way that people buy and sell art. For instance, as a work of art changes hands, it can be recorded with an exchange of the NFT in the public ledger of a blockchain.
This could be a secure way to keep provenance clear, which is the heart of art investment. If you can’t prove the painting you have is a genuine article, then the possibility of forgery or misattribution eliminates your ability to make any financial gain.
In the past (and by and large today), provenance has been secured with a Certificate of Authenticity, a signed document that travels with the artwork to prove it’s the original. All kinds of mediums have relied on this method: from painting to fine art photography to sculpture and beyond. I supply a Certificate of Authenticity for every limited edition print of my work, registered with a hologram number provided by ILFORD Imaging.
Of course, none of this is relevant to the art lover who simply wants to enjoy a beautiful work. Overall, if the art looks great, who cares if it is the original? However, if you want to eventually make money by reselling it (or at least keep this possibility open), you need proof of provenance.
This has led some companies and auction houses to use blockchain as their primary way of tracking provenance, given its security.