Web3 and blockchain technology have the potential to change the art industry in many ways, revolutionizing the way art is created, owned, and experienced as well as providing new opportunities for artists and collectors. This will undoubtedly lead to new forms of collecting and a new diversity of collectors entering the art market. 

In this latest edition, the ART+TECH Report | Digital Art Coll3cting explores the rapidly evolving world of web3 and its impact on the art market and the concept of art collecting, delving deep into the buying patterns and collecting motivations of art enthusiasts and Digital Art collectors.

From April to July 2023, we conducted an online survey involving 300 global Digital Art collectors who generously shared their thoughts with us. The report was published in October 2023.

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gender (%)
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Average price spent per Digital Artwork
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Digital Art collecting experiences in years
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collecting activies
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As framework of the ART+TECH Report | Digital Art Coll3cting, 300 international art and art NFT collectors were surveyed about their personal buying experiences and collecting motivations with Digital Art.

The online survey was conducted between June 8th and July 31st, 2023 (using the Typeform software). By distributing the survey link in cooperation with renowned art and NFT experts, influencing communities and via Twitter, Discord and LinkedIn, we were able to address a correspondingly broad collector base.

In the questionnaire, respondents could identify themselves as male,  female, other or could prefer not to say. Those who identified as male or female were split in 55% and 39% respectively, with 0% selected other and 6% preferred not to say and included a variety of age groups and collector profiles. Among the 300 respondents surveyed, 80 % identified as experienced Digital Art collectors and form the basis for the following questions on art NFT collecting.


The most important findings are summarised
in the following 9 chapters.


Digital Art

Joins The Art Canon

83% agree that Digital Art
holds the same significance
as traditional art forms

In this survey, 83% of respondents agree that Digital Art holds the same significance as traditional art forms like painting or sculpture. For 86% of all collectors the appreciation of Digital Art is the number one collecting motivation, and 55% of respondents stated that their personal perception of the significance of Digital Art has increased in the last year. For many years, Digital Art has struggled with value appreciation and ownership challenges, but digital ownership associated with blockchain technology has finally anchored it in the official art canon and given it its significance and merits it certainly deserves.

[ 01 ]

“Finally it is officially perceived (in value and meaning)
in line with traditional art.”


the rise

of genart

Over half of the collectors focus
on blockchain-based art

In this study, Generative Art received the highest collecting focus (55%), indicating its significance as a leading Digital Art form, with Blockchain-based art coming in second (48%). The advancement of Generative Art can certainly be attributed to artists' increasing recognition of blockchain as a dynamic creative medium, resulting in entirely new artistic expressions; undeniably also fascinating for collectors with a genuine appreciation for Digital Art. Interestingly, AI Art, despite its novelty, ranks fourth and certainly stands to gain from the current AI momentum. In this survey, fxhash and ArtBlocks are the top platforms for collecting Generative Art.

[ 02 ]

“Generative Art has a unique opportunity to comment on the everchanging relationship between human and machine.”


Crypto Crash

≠ Art NFT Crash

More than half of the respondents still buy the same amount or even more art NFTs than before the crypto crash

The survey found that crypto winter had less of an impact on art NFT collecting than on the crypto and NFT market in general, in contrast to what is frequently suggested in the media. Approx. 56% of respondents reported consistent (37%) or increased (19%) art NFT collecting despite the crypto market's downturn. Women were least impacted, with 2/3 buying the same or more art NFTs. And 85% of traditional art collectors even increased their Digital Art collecting activity during the crypto winter. Interestingly, nearly half (48%) of all collectors indicated that cryptocurrency’s volatility does not affect the perceived and personal value of their art collection.

[ 03 ]

“ As the market declines, the builders and those who are truly motivated remain. It's less noisy and easier to identify cultural and communal values. ”


Web3 Rules

/ Roles AppLY

Rethinking the traditional
paradigms of the art market

Open marketplaces have emerged as the epicenter of the web3 (r)evolution in the art world. Collectors benefit from the possibility to buy directly from and communicate with the artist without going through a gallery or other third party. In this survey, the three most preferred ways to buy Digital Art are marketplaces (35%), direct artist purchases (30%), and curated art platforms (27.4%), while Galleries and auction houses fall behind. Another novel aspect is the fusion of traditional artistic roles: Artists also actively collect (43%), while collectors curate (35%) and advise (32%) and communities shape artists' careers and market demand. Web3’s inclusive approach has made Digital Art collecting more accessible to new collectors, diversifying the space and market.

[ 04 ]

“More and more reflective artists and true collectors are becoming interested in learning about web3 technologies and exploring the new possibilities of tokenizing art and how it can improve their practice as both an artist and a collector. ”


power to

the artist

Artists in control over shaping
their own careers in web3

Web3 is reshaping the art world by giving artists more autonomy and control. Artists can now promote and directly sell to collectors without traditional intermediaries, as well as participate in resale royalties from the secondary market. The ability to shape one's own artistic career is primarily in the hands of the artists themselves (Top1 answer with 38%). For 75% of collectors, direct artist relationships are a primary collecting motivation, with 65% considering it the most important form of utility. This increased level of direct interaction benefits both artists and collectors, and is only consistent with the creator economy philosophy of web3.


curation &


remain key

80% view curation and contextualization
of digital art as highly important

80% of the surveyed respondents consider curation and contextualization in the crypto art space to be extremely important. Furthermore, more curation and contextualization (48%), followed by the artist's exhibition history with meaningful institutions (47%), and increased adoption by museums (40%), are the main drivers to purchase more art NFTs. Interestingly, these top three reasons are all curatorial in nature and follow common art market contextualization practices. This clearly demonstrates that Digital Art collectors strive for the same (artworld-standard) relevance, categorization, and value in Digital Art, despite web3’s concept of decentralization.

[ 06 ]

“It’s great to see institutions interacting
more with it than ever before.”


The Weight

of communities

Communities influence 54% of
collectors in their buying decisions

65% of respondents actively participate in artist communities, and more than half of them acknowledge the high to very high influence of community recommendations on their art NFT collecting decisions. Communities also play a crucial role in circulating information, ranking as second most significant source of information (60%), just after social media (79%) and before art NFT platforms (48%). Communities have transitioned into a pivotal player, wielding considerable influence over artist careers, opinion building, collecting decisions, and even shaping market demand; this represents a significant shift in the traditional art market paradigm.

[ 07 ]

“An artistic vision matters, but only if you can cultivate a community around it.”



ownership: A NEW WAY

of collecting

1/3 of fractionalized art collectors
are motivated by the concept of
collective ownership

Although purchasing fractionalized art is still a relatively new option, collectors are already taking advantage of it. 21% said they had already purchased some fractionalized art, while only 7% of art NFT collectors said they were unfamiliar with the concept as such. Once again, one of the lowest rated motivations was an investment-driven belief in fractionalized art as an asset class. Most interestingly, one-third of collectors were motivated primarily by the web3 inherent concept of collective ownership. Given the rise in digital ownership, this is undoubtedly just the beginning with more concepts of collecting and ownership to emerge.

[ 08 ]

“ Many traditional art collectors do not understand digital collecting or believe it is worthwhile to collect digital art. Collector education would most likely expand capital in the space. ”


life after

the hype

71% of all collectors plan to buy
just as many or even more art NFTs
in the near future

As the initial wave of excitement subsides, the rise of Digital Art is only beginning in earnest: Looking ahead, a substantial 71% plan to collect either an equivalent or even greater number of art NFTs over the next year. Notably, more women (75%) than men (68%) aim to expand their collections. A significant 71% of surveyed collectors believe the importance of Digital Art will grow, with 37% expecting its relevance to increase even significantly. This survey emphasizes Digital Art's long-term significance as an art form, not a trend. The journey has just begun and will evolve as technology advances. #wearestillearly!

[ 09 ]

“ This is a historical moment, and both artists and collectors have an important opportunity to shape it. ”

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