Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Art Business

First Advisor

Lawrence Motz

Second Advisor

Noah Kupferman


Art price inflation, rising levels of wealth, and the artworld’s financialization have
changed the way investors view the art market. In an attempt to capture the
momentous returns realized by successful collectors, art investment funds have
emerged with the conviction art can be used as a speculative or strategic alternative asset. However, the majority of art funds have been dissolved or put on hold. This paper examines the investment characteristics of fine art to uncover the rationale for art investment fund failures, finding the art market’s inefficiency as the foremost explanation. Subsequently, non-fungible token (NFT) art and collectibles – a new digital submarket of the artworld – are explored as an alternative to fine art
investment. Through analysis and comparison of both fine art and NFT markets, this paper argues the NFT art and collectibles market is considerably more efficient, and therefore a more viable investment option than fine art for art investment funds.