Art Blocks artist donates $3.5m in Eth to Médecins Sans Frontières via Australian branch
A digital artist in the Art Blocks community has donated US$3.5 million in Ethereum to Doctors Without Borders via the organisation’s Australian branch, in what’s believed to be the largest charitable donation related to an NFT project.
The Dutch artist gave 1188.226 Ethereum, which was 25 per cent of their proceeds from the sales of a series of generative artwork.
The Médecins Sans Frontières Australia accepted the donation on behalf of the global organisation, as it’s the only MSF branch set up to receive crypto donations.
“As soon as I saw that MSF accepts crypto, I knew this was 100% the right place to give it to,” the artist, who wants to maintain his anonymity, told Stockhead.
“I think the work that MSF does is absolutely heroic. They help people on both sides of a conflict regardless of politics, because we are all humans. That is the most beautiful thing and I can 100% stand behind that.”
MSF processed the gift through The Giving Block, a Washington, DC-based organisation that helps charities legally accept donations in cryptocurrency and convert the proceeds to fiat.
“Donations like this are rocket fuel for taking crypto and NFTs mainstream,” said Pat Duffy, co-founder of The Giving Block.
“This is the type of transformational crypto philanthropy that gets the world embracing the technology.
“It’s donors like this that are making crypto the most charitable industry on the planet.”
“We are grateful for the extraordinary generosity of the Generative Art and Art Blocks communities,” said Jennifer Tierney, MSF Australia executive director.
“This game-changing donation comes at a time where the COVID-19 emergency has compounded the already urgent medical needs of people around the world.
“This gift will go a long way to helping us support our patients now more than ever.”
MSF Australia said it has accepted more than a dozen crypto donations since it first began accepting them in March.
The global humanitarian organisation has teams active in more than 70 countries around the world, easing suffering from wars, natural disasters, epidemics and more.
The artist’s identity is an open secret in the Art Blocks community but he told Stockhead he wants to keep his identity “relatively anonymous because I’m still processing the huge changes in my personal situation this project has brought me”.
This story has been updated to add comment from the artist.