London-based art-focused NFT startup, Verse, which connects collectors with top artists, has $2.4 million in seed funding.
The funding came from notable angels including Paul Forster (Indeed.com), Ben Stephenson (Impala), Michael Daffey (Galaxy Digital), Jeremy Hindle (Integrity), Nick Shekerdemian (The Venture Collective) and Venrex VC.
Jamie Gourlay, Verse co-founder and CEO, said: “For artists, just as in the traditional art world, marketing and selling NFTs is a huge job and requires specialist knowledge and skills. It’s unlikely the world’s best digital artists will rise to the top if they also have to be world-class at web3 marketing in order to do so. We’re therefore helping artists join forces with people who really get it, leaving the artist to do what they do best – create amazing works!”
Verse investor Paul Forster said: “I am delighted to be an investor in Verse and looking forward to seeing some of the most important cultural artefacts being created in the digital realm and made accessible to collectors who aren’t on the Art Basel VIP list!”
Exhibitions of NFT artworks
Verse has collaborated with twelve leading artists, curators, and creative tastemakers, including artist Simon Denny, artist David Shrigley, Noah Davis, Elena Soboleva, and artist Tyler Hobbs – to launch its first selling exhibition.
The platform will launch its first exhibition on June 16 featuring a mixture of curators and artists from across the art and NFT worlds. It is led by Verse’s newly appointed Head of Exhibitions Leyla Fakhr, former Tate curator and art advisor.
Verse’s first selling exhibition features 12 works by artists with dynamic practices across the spectrum of digital art-making. This is Tomorrow is named in homage to the watershed 1956 exhibition at Whitechapel Gallery, which pre-empted the emergence of pop art.
Works from the exhibition will be released on Verse.works, beginning June 16 through the end of the month. Collectors can further explore Verse exhibitions, curators, and artists through a range of exclusive content and live discussions in the Verse Discord and on Twitter, where it is building a global community with a shared vision for the future of digital art.
What does Verse do?
Verse is a new company founded by Augustinas Malinauskas and Jamie Gourley. It builds a platform to help collectors identify and collect the highest-quality NFTs that are laying the groundwork for a new way to experience art.
Verse aims to make the iconic cultural objects of tomorrow accessible to millions of people and enable leading artists to engage with a growing new audience. It offers collectors artworks selected by leading gallerists, museum curators, critics and artists to bridge the gap between the traditional art market and crypto space. Furthermore, Verse will amplify the most important cultural artefacts being created in the digital realm.
Currently, these are hard to buy without significant crypto and NFT knowledge, yet Verse will make the process as easy as shopping on Amazon. Verse’s state-of-the-art technology allows the processing of secondary market trades without the need to process blockchain transactions, resulting in low carbon emissions for trades within the platform.