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Historically, the art market has been shrouded in opaqueness and exclusivity, permissioned access and asymmetry of information that rivals the systemic ills of legacy financial markets that led to the Great Recession. Moreover, legacy art market stakeholders have, through the centuries, been entrenched in elitist and inequitable notions of art that excluded Black artists. These legacy intermediaries have also consistently demonstrated a deep and enduring disdain for any art connected to the digital world. That is, until the age of COVID-19 and the dramatically increasing value and dominance of the non-fungible token (NFT) market.

This Essay explores why, and how, the technology that Satoshi intended for the disintermediation of financial markets has demonstrated incredible potential to disintermediate the art world and enfranchise Black and brown artists. The often-exclusionary bright line between revered “fine art” expressed in physical form, and digital art, has begun to blur. So too has the invisible racial dividing line used to segregate artists based on race. If measuring creative justice in terms of the building blocks of the future of creativity, we are at the genesis.

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Lewis & Clark Law Review