Is the Fyre Festival logo the most controversial NFT yet?

We all have a picture that we wish never existed, perhaps lurking online or as a portrait in the attic. But imagine that cursed image was related to an equally-cursed event that hit headlines around the world, for all the wrong reasons.

That was the situation rapper Ja Rule found himself in, lumbered with a mocking memento of the Fyre Festival (remember that fiasco from a few years back?). Rule was one of the founders behind the fest, and it seems he still owned a large oil painting by Tripp Derrick Barnes of the Fyre Festival logo. See what it looks like below (and if you're inspired to pick up a brush, check out our essential painting techniques for artists). 

Fyre Festival logo

The Fyre festival logo in all its, er, glory (Image credit: Flipkick)

Wanting to get rid of all ashes of the Fyre event, including the painting he originally bought for $2000, Ra told Forbes, "I just wanted that energy out," – and out it has gone, to the tune of $122,00 (not in cash, but cryptocurrency, and a very trending kind of crypto indeed).

For whatever reason, an anonymous buyer paid for the 48″ x 60″ oil painting through the nonfungible tokens (NFT) exchange platform, Flipkick. Ja had initially set the asking price at $600k cash but settled for NFTs instead. Confused about NFTs? Here's all you need to know.

Fyre Festival logo NFT

Ja Rule (left) and the infamous logo (Image credit: Flipkick)

Why someone would want a painting of a logo for a disastrous festival, we don't know. Definitely not for that price, and not with that history (indeed, the buyer will find included with the sale a note by Rule saying, 'F--k this painting.')

Either way, it's not the priciest NFT artwork ever sold - that would be Beeple's Everydays – The First 5000 Days which auctioned off for an unbelievable $69.3 million earlier this month. Ye, it seems NFTs are really are on fire right now.

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Giacomo Lee

Giacomo is a writer and talking head who has covered creativity and creative tools for Wallpaper*, Digital Arts, Creative Boom, VICE, Little White Lies, the BBC and more. Giacomo has also hosted for Adobe and D&AD, and judged the annual New Blood Awards. He was deputy editor of Creative Bloq for a short time in 2021.