Most Expensive NFT and What Makes this Digital Asset So Special

Some digital assets can reach impressive values in the NFT market, being one of the most promising investments in the art world. It is common to see collections like Cryptopunks and others dominating the industry and becoming references to art enthusiasts. 

But have you ever wondered which is the most expensive NFT ever sold? If yes, this article is for you.

We will show you some of the most expensive NFTs ever sold and what makes them so special. The NFT community is constantly uploading new artworks and unique digital assets. Still, not all of them can reach the same success as TPunk’s generative art or other creations from Beeple, for example.

If you want to become a successful artist in the digital realm, make sure to pay attention to these characteristics. This way, you’ll get insights into what to create and how to reach successful results as a digital artwork creator.

This article is a segment of a more extensive piece about NFT basics.

Why NFTs Get So Expensive

We all know that an NFT can reach an impressive price tag and sell for millions of dollars. This happens not only to digital illustrations but also to other digital art forms, like music.

But why do some digital collectibles reach such value? There is no right answer to this question, but several factors contribute to these astronomical NFT sales.

One of the main ones is that each NFT sold is unique. There are collections of generative NFT art with more than thousands of pieces, but each has unique traits and details that make it worth more or less. The traits and characteristics of each art piece directly impact NFT prices, and that’s why one specific asset can have a value completely different from the entire collection.

Another reason why non-fungible tokens can reach an immense value is because of the real-life benefits some collections can have. Several expensive NFT art pieces perfectly mix digital and physical art. One great example is Louis Vuitton, which launched a collection in which, once you acquired an NFT, you’d get a replica of the acquired piece in real life. 

Along with that, there are several other reasons why the NFT space has such valuable digital assets, such as the uniqueness of the item and the hype generated by the product.

Main Characteristics of Successful NFT Collections

As we mentioned, specific characteristics make an NFT more or less expensive. Here, we will show you some of these factors, along with tips on improving your artistic expression and increasing your earnings with crypto art.

Make sure to take a look at all of them, and you’ll definitely reach expensive NFT sales with your digital artwork. Here are some of the most important characteristics for creating expensive NFT collections:

Trait Rarity

One of the main things collectors look for when bidding on an NFT art piece is the traits it features. Of course, this happens mostly when you have generative non-fungible token collections. When you’re selling a single art piece, this is not a detail you need to worry about.

On collections, especially generative ones, the traits of your assets will define their value. The rarer the trait, the higher its value.

You can also check other collection traits to see how it works using tools like Rarity Tools, for example. This way, you’ll understand how these details can impact the collection value.


One factor that directly affects how valuable a collection gets is the hype generated around it. One great example is the Cryptopunk NFT collection. The hype generated around its launch is one of the biggest in the entire NFT history, which resulted in some of the pieces being sold for tens of millions of dollars.

This is why having a good social media presence and content strategy for promoting your NFT work is very important. The more hyped and known it gets, the more people will be willing to bid for the assets when it launches.

One of the main characteristics of expensive NFTs sold on marketplaces is the strong presence on social media, which always creates engaging content and activities for the users to interact with. It is one of the best tips for increasing the asset value and making the sales process much easier.

Art Quality

One of the best parts of NFT art is that anyone can do it. There are several tools that allow people to create all kinds of art even though they don’t have experience with illustration or anything like that. 

But even though you can create any kind of art, quality is still a factor that influences how profitable an NFT or collection becomes. This doesn’t mean that only highly-detailed artworks can reach expensive values.

Artworks that present more quality are usually more expensive, thanks to the time dedicated to creating the pieces and the effort put into the collection. The same goes for animated artwork. Creating requires many more steps, so their value is usually higher than static images.


Another characteristic of some NFT projects that can help to increase their value is their real-life utility. Several NFT projects perfectly blend online ownership with reality, like BAYC, which gives you many benefits if you’re a community member. You can go to exclusive parties and have discounts at their own cafe, along with meeting collectors alike in these spaces.

Benefits add much value to their assets and can go from tickets to special events to whatever you’d like. Planning attractive activities is the best way to convince investors and enthusiasts to bid on your assets.


The last item on the list is originality. Creating something new and unique gives you a much higher chance of having record-breaking sales than just copying another collection.

Each person has unique characteristics when it comes to their art and illustrations. Make sure that your NFT represents this uniqueness of style.

Crypto markets value this characteristic, and collections that present different art styles are usually in high demand.

Again, you don’t need to be an acclaimed artist to do this. Just make sure to express yourself and what makes you authentic through the art you create. This way, your creations will be highly sought after.

Most Expensive NFT Art Sold

But which NFT is the most expensive one? Here is the answer to this question.

Currently, the NFT sold for the highest price is an art piece called Merge. It was created by the artist Pak and acquired for the price of 91.8 million dollars.

The highest-selling NFT was announced in the Nifty Gateway marketplace, and whether it is considered a single art piece or not is still debatable. Buyers could purchase tokens for the artwork with a starting price of US$299. In the end, over 28 thousand tokens were sold, accumulating a price of more than US$90,000,000.00.

This expensive artwork is a historical piece in the NFT space and will probably hold its record for a long time. Thanks to the incredible demand in its launch, the price for each token would constantly go up as time passed.

This is not the first NFT of the pseudonymous artist who has been creating art for over 20 years. Before Merge, they had already been creating pieces that were worth millions of dollars, like “The Fungible Collection,” sold on the same marketplace for almost US$17,000,000.00.

What About Other Millionaire NFTs?

Merge is a truly unique piece, but it is not the only NFT to reach such enormous sales value. We will show some other art pieces that feature jaw-dropping prices and are considered references to success in the digital asset creation industry.

Here are the most expensive NFTs ever sold besides Merge. Make sure to take a look at each one and gather inspiration for your next project.

Everydays: the First 5000 Days – 69,3 Million

For a long time, Beeple was the most-known name in the NFT world. This happened thanks to the success of his masterpiece, called “Everydays: the First 5000 Days.” 

Beeple’s artwork was composed of 5,000 different images put together once per day. This journey started in May 2007 and took the artist over ten years to complete. The auction for its sale began in March 2021, and the NFT was sold for an astounding sum of over 69 million dollars.

It was a complete shock for the industry since no one could raise funds close to this value until Beeple’s creation arrived. The collector who acquired the piece is called Vignesh Sundaresan, another known name in the NFT space, with numerous previous investments.

The First 5000 Days is a truly remarkable piece, not only because of the time it took to be completed but also because of how much it means to the NFT ecosystem and the future of art in digital technology platforms. Each image included in Beeple’s Everydays is unique and shows his talent as an artist.

Clock – 52,7 Million

The third most expensive NFT in history has quite an interesting story behind it. More than just a piece to profit, Clock was created with the objective of raising funds for the legal defense of Julian Assange against the threat of a possible extradition to the US. Assange is the creator of WikiLeaks, and the clock featured a real-time digital counter of how much time he was being imprisoned.

The dynamic NFT was purchased for US$52,7 million by a group called AssangeDAO. This group comprises over 10,000 members united by the same objective: freeing Julian Assange.

Clock is not a mainstream culture product. It is proof that NFTs can also have a social impact, and it was ultimately purchased to help Assange’s legal defense and generate impact in the real world.

HUMAN ONE – 28,985 Million

Beeple is constantly innovating and bringing original ideas to the NFT scenario, and HUMAN ONE, its electronic sculpture, is no exception. The art piece is a single NFT featured inside a glass. 

Inside the structure, you can see a real astronaut, and around it is a digital panel with a generative work of art that changes dynamically over time. It perfectly mixes digital assets with tangible commodity and physical objects to create something unique and highly valuable for those who appreciate creative expression.

Such products are highly sought-after, which resulted in the NFT being bought for almost US$29,000,000.00 at an art auction event. The sculpture also shows Beeple’s versatility as an artist, completely different from anything he created before or any other NFT piece.

CryptoPunk #5822 – 23,7 Million

Finding expensive CryptoPunk NFT pieces is no surprise for anyone. Every piece of the generative collection sells for astronomical values, so having one on this list is already something expected.

Cryptopunks is a collection of generative art created by two of Larva Labs’s directors, and according to them, the inspiration for this collection is the punk scene of London. This was responsible for creating one of the most successful generative collections in all of NFT history.

However, one specific Cryptopunk stands out among the others, especially thanks to its sale price. Cryptopunk #5822 has an alien-style punk featuring a blue bandana and was sold for the whipping price of 23,7 million dollars to a group called Yuga Labs.

As previously mentioned, there are several other high-priced Cryptopunks, and the entire collection has a high value attached to them. Still, this one combines some of the rarest traits in the entire collection, making it a rare Cryptopunk with a skyrocketing price.

Other Valuable Cryptopunks

#5822 isn’t the only valuable Cryptopunk out there. Several other items from the collection are worth more than houses. Here are some examples of Cryptopunks that are worth multi-million dollars:

  • Cryptopunk #7523 – 11,7 million dollars
  • Cryptopunk #4156 – 10,2 million dollars
  • Cryptopunk #5577 – 7,7 million dollars

Each asset has its own characteristics, and their prices are constantly changing. From the first to the third most expensive Cryptopunk, they all cost more than ten million dollars.

 TPunk #3442 – 10.5 Million

TPunk is another popular generative art collection, and it’s similar to Cryptopunks in many aspects, including the art style. This doesn’t mean it lacks originality, and this can be seen in the interest of users in acquiring these pieces. 

The collection also features a hefty price, and some items are worth real fortunes. One of these cases is TPunk #3441, worth over ten million dollars. Combining some of the rarest traits of the entire collection, this specific piece is quite unique, especially considering its similarity to Joker’s character.

All these characteristics make it the most expensive asset sold to date in the TPunk collection. Another curiosity about this piece is that it was the first NFT ever to be sold in the Tron Blockchain for the total price of 120M TRX.

Right-click and Save As Guy – 7 million

This is the most valuable piece of a pretty, unique collection that got famous in the NFT space and caught the attention of many famous celebrities. The right-click and save-as guy was sold for US$7,090,000.00 to anyone other than Snoop Dogg himself. He has always been an active NFT investor, and this piece is one of his prize possessions. 

The collection was created by the artist XCopy. His art is characterized by mixing artwork with computer glitches, aesthetics, and other digital effects on the background, creating a unique art style that investors seek after. The result is a collection of multiple pieces worth over a million dollars.

Best Marketplaces to Upload Your NFTs to

Another important aspect of the NFT creation process is the marketplace choice. It directly affects the popularity of your digital asset and how much it’s worth. Uploading it to famous platforms and using bigger blockchains, like Ethereum, will usually attract more bidders to your creations, increasing the value of your products.

If you plan on creating your own collection or start investing in NFTs, here is a list of the best NFT markets you can keep an eye on. Each of them can feature different blockchains and bidding options, so take a look at these aspects before choosing the best one for you.


OpenSea is undoubtedly one of the best marketplaces to post your assets. It is currently the biggest NFT market in the world and features tools perfect for uploading digital art, whether you’re a beginner or an advanced creator.

It is the primary place for finding valuable collections, and most of the famous NFT collections, like Cryptopunk and BAYC, were uploaded there. This helped increase its popularity and features.

You can easily find numerous bidding options to see which one best suits the needs of your crypto wallet. Moreover, it features multiple blockchains, including Polygon, for lazy minting if the gas fee is a problem for you.

Nifty Gateway

Nifty Gateway’s audience is usually composed of more experienced creators and investors, being the preferred marketplace for uploading some of the most expensive NFTs ever sold, like Merge. The interface is attractive and has numerous features that allow you to search for the perfect NFT for your wallet.

It also supports numerous coins, but Ethereum is still the most used. If you already have experience with NFTs or are looking for unique art pieces, this might be the perfect place to look at.


Rarible has always been a reference when it comes to creative illustration projects, and it’s also one of the best marketplaces if this is the kind of project you’re creating. Every NFT collection posted there is eye-catching and unique, being one of the best NFT spaces for artists looking for inspiration to let their creativity flow.

Rarible is also one of the most secure marketplaces for purchasing and selling NFTs, with many features that help protect your data and devices used to search the website. You can also link a series of crypto wallets to it, being one of the most versatile options for creators and investors.


Mintable became really popular among collectors from all levels. One of the characteristics that most attract investors and artists to this platform is the lazy minting options. 

It is one of the best options if you want to upload NFTs without paying huge gas fees, giving the creator multiple options. Just like in OpenSea, you’ll also find numerous bidding options to choose from, always having one that adapts to your pocket and what you’re trying to purchase.

Moreover, Mintable is also one of the most versatile marketplaces for digital art variety. You can find all kinds of assets, going from illustrations to music. This is your go-to option if you want to invest in other kinds of NFTs besides paintings.

Conclusion on the Most Expensive NFT

NFT art pieces can sell for incredible prices depending on the artist and many other factors. We see hundreds of digital art files sold for over a million dollars on the NFT market, being one of the most profitable investments in the art space. 

From generative art collections to unique pieces that mix digital and physical, several unique assets catch the attention of thousands of collectors worldwide. Whether you want to become an investor or an NFT creator, knowing these characteristics is indispensable to becoming successful on the market, and observing big artists is the best way to learn.

Not only that, but the marketplace where you upload your assets or look for one to buy also greatly impacts the price of the art piece. Make sure to choose one that is aligned with your objective and the type of asset being created. This way, you drastically increase your chances of success.

Now that you know everything you need, it is time to start looking for some valuable assets to invest in or plan your new NFT collection. Follow the tips listed below, and you’ll have a successful career as an NFT creator.

By Lucciano Pelizzoli

Whether it's explaining the intricacies of blockchain technology or researching the latest trends in the NFT market, Lucciano has a knack for turning technical jargon into easily digestible prose. He combines his passion for writing with an insatiable curiosity for all things tech. Having started his adventure with NFT while studying marketing at PUCRS, Lucciano sees his future in creating his own NFT projects on the Solana blockchain platform.

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