GODA’s Hilma af Klint NFT auction comes to end, artist’s family criticizes the drop


  • GODA, the NFT artwork platform, organized an NFTs auction, representing the artwork of Hilma af Klint.
  • The NFT auction has been opposed by the family members of the late artist though the official Foundation is a part of the project.
  • A refund for a 15% discount on the selling price was given to GODA Mint Pass NFT owners.

The recent NFT launch by the Gallery of Digital Assets or GODA, co-founded by Pharrell Williams in 2022, was stuck in a controversy upon receiving complaints from descendants of the late artist. 

On Monday, an auction was launched by GODA for tokenized digital recreations of Hilma af Klint, the noteworthy Swedish abstract artist. The Ethereum NFTs are termed “Paintings for the Temple” and were built by GODA in collaboration with The Hilma af Klint Foundation, Stolpe Publishing and Acute Art.

Two similar sets of 193 digital NFT recreations of the artwork were minted and one “non-commercial” set was given to the Foundation as donation. Coming to the other set, 163 NFTs were meant for auction and another 30 pieces were taken by the team of GODA. The NFTs were released collectively with the official catalog raisonne of the late artist.

Despite the official Foundation being onboard with the auction, family members of the late artist opposed the NFT launch.

Johan af Klint, af Klint’s grandnephew and Hedvig Ersman, Erik af Klint’s (Hilma af Klint’s nephew) granddaughter, during an interview with Hyperallergic, disputed that the NFTs creation was against the wishes of the artist. The NFT sale was also criticized on Twitter by Ersman. 

Ersman said that Himla saw the paintings as part of a single project and they were supposed to be kept together. They are not something to hang on someone’s living room’s wall. The NFT is being commercialized and using the artist’s name and honor to bring down her message.

The artwork is in the public domain. Jessica Hoglund, The Hilma af Klint Foundation CEO, told  Hyperallergic that it was not in the position to allow or resist such reproductions. She further shared that the Foundation holds a collaboration with Stolpe regarding the catalog raisonne and NFTs are included in the deal. 

Right before the auction, GODA shared through a tweet that it assured all required contracts and agreements ready so as to approve the originality of the project. GODA also said that the family members represented the Foundation falsely. 

According to the statement, GODA wasn’t told that the family was unhappy and this is the very first time when it was unaware of any concern. A deal was signed with Stolpe Publishing and Acute Art who brought the opportunity to GODA, which makes GODA the most lawful and trustworthy art platform.

The auction concluded 163 pieces being sold for 1.5 ETH each. Though the format of the auction ranked bidders based on how much they were interested to pay; however, the final price was based on the offering of the 163rd highest bidder. In simple words, each of the top 163 bidders paid 1.5 ETH in the end and a discount for any overbid amount was offered to buyers.