Some NFTs cost millions of dollars, so why are individuals willing to pay a lot for a JPEG?

NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, have gained in popularity in recent months. 

Because of the cryptocurrency community’s eagerness to invest in these assets, their prices have soared, with the most popular NFTs fetching millions of dollars. 

The value of an NFT stems from its uniqueness, which allows digital artists to benefit from their work. 

With all of the excitement around NFTs, this is an excellent moment to examine the most costly NFTs sold so far.

1. Everydays: The First 5000 Days: $69.3 Million

The most expensive NFT ever sold is Everydays: The First 5000 Days by digital artist Mike “Beeple” Winkelmann. 

  • Everydays fetched this record-breaking amount during Christie’s first-ever digital art sale on March 11th, marking the first time a major auction house sold a wholly digital NFT.


Everydays – The First 5000 Days NFT, Beeple, 21,069 pixels x 21,069 pixels (316,939,910 bytes).  Photographs courtesy of the artist and Christie’s.

  • Since 2007, Beeple has uploaded an image to the internet every day. The Everydays NFT is a collage of over 5000 pictures Beeple made and released over the previous 13 years, reflecting the evolution of his art and technology. 
  • Images from everyday life reflect society’s preoccupation with and dread of technology.

Beeple has the distinction of creating the third-most-expensive piece by a living artist ever sold at auction with Everdays.

2. CryptoPunk #7523: $11.8 Million

CryptoPunks have dominated the NFT artwork market in recent months, with four of these NFTs being among the 10 most expensive NFTs ever sold. 

  • CryptoPunk #7523, also known as Covid Alien, was sold by Sotheby’s auction house in June and belonged to the highly sought-after alien kind of CryptoPunks. 
  • It has teal-coloured skin, a surgical cap, and a mask.


CryptoPunk #7523, Larva Labs (2017). Sotheby’s provided the image.

  • Only nine alien CryptoPunks are available out of a total of 10,000 CryptoPunks, making them a valuable collector’s item. 

In 2017, Larva Labs released the 2424 pixel 8-bit CryptoPunk character to symbolise the crypto-anarchist worldview. They were the first NFTs to be created on the Ethereum network.

3. $7.58 Million for CryptoPunk #3100

The second most costly CryptoPunk is also one of Larva Labs’ nine unique teal-coloured alien CryptoPunks. 

CryptoPunk #3100

  • This CrpytoPunk stands out from the other nine alien punks because of its white and blue headpiece. 


  • Even though Cryptopunk #3100 was just sold in March 2021, it was quickly relisted for sale. It is presently advertised for 35,000 Ethereum, which is about $149 million at writing.

If it sells for this much, it will break everyday’s record for the most expensive NFT.

4. $7.57 Million for CryptoPunk #7804.

Dylan Field, the vendor of CryptoPunk #7804, referred to the pipe-smoking extraterrestrial with a hat and sunglasses as the digital Mona Lisa. 

  • It was purchased in March 2021 by an anonymous bidder using the Twitter handle Peruggia. 


CryptoPunk #7804

  • Its value, like that of other alien CryptoPunks, was determined by rarity and perceived aesthetic attractiveness.

There are 10,000 CryptoPunks, out of which only 378 smoke pipes, 317 wear tiny sunglasses, and 254 wear forward-facing caps. 

CryptoPunk #7804 has all of these qualities, making it one of the most uncommon Cryptopunks in existence.

5. Crossroads is worth $6.66 million.

Crossroads, another NFT by digital artist Beeple, makes a political message by mocking former President Donald Trump’s failure. 

  • Trump is shown laying face down on the ground with expletives written on his nude body in the 10-second footage. 


Beeple, Crossroads (2020). Courtesy of the artist.

We would have seen an NFT depicting Trump donning a crown and walking through flames if he had won the 2020 presidential election.

Beeple’s initial political aim isn’t Trump. He has also created caricatures of Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton. 

Is it true that NFTs are a new art form?

The enthusiasm that has led to these record-breaking NFT sales shows no sign of slowing down. NFTs are sure to continue shaking up the art world for the foreseeable future, upending digital ownership norms in the process. 

Whether you think these computerized images are worthy of comparisons to the Mona Lisa or other classics, they have cemented their place as a vital participant in the digital world.