Live Blog: WTF Is Going On With The Lascaux Editions?
The mysterious artist Lascaux has created quite a stir in the NFT and digital art market over the past few weeks, coming to a head this past week with the launch of the Lascaux Editions.
The artist has built out a series of editions, each with unique one-word titles, under the umbrella of "Lascaux Editions." The ecosystem has been expanding by the day with several twists and turns (and burns), as excitement builds.
Additionally, various aspects of the artwork, language, pricing, and more have led to rampant speculation of ties to Banksy and other influencers.
Here is what we know so far.
Lascaux's story starts on Nov. 7, 2022, with their very first tweet (in French) "Tard dans la nuit et le tag est fait mais qui le découvrira." This roughly translates to "Late night and the tag is done but who will find out."
Three days later, the artist tweeted out the image below. This was a preview of the artist's Noble Cards drop, titled "INFLUENCER: LASCAUX." The supply of the card was 4,664, and the animated image is now revealing certain squares, showing letters "N" and "W" along with a few numbers (leading to speculation that they are coordinates).
The artist went on to drop a few more 1/1s on SuperRare over the next few weeks, across late November and December, which seemed like relatively normal artist activity. What is notable about the pieces is their sale price - 31.69 ETH for "Capitalism Cranberry" and 42.69 ETH for "Free speach: $8."
Remember those numbers. Fast forward to Dec. 9 when the artist tweeted "next week should be [Fire]" - and oh, how right they were, both literally and figuratively. The chain of events was about to unfold.
On Dec. 12, Lascaux tweeted out a teaser video for a new 1/1 piece "Leverage," which would be a bidder's edition. This means anyone who bid but didn't win the piece would receive an edition as a consolation prize.
New art tomorrow. Bid editions, yes. pic.twitter.com/z4A9CjUeZP— Lascaux (@Lascauxart) December 13, 2022
The piece was won by collector @xen0ph0n for 18.634 ETH on the afternoon of the 14th.
Later that day, Lascaux tweeted "Those that sold (first 10) capitalized, but lose in the end." Then a few hours later, the artist kicked off the now-infamous chain of events with the launch of Fukt as a 0.01 ETH open edition.
Are we really this fukt? Find out Christmas Dayhttps://t.co/Mnw71ZSeDS— Lascaux (@Lascauxart) December 14, 2022
The Lascaux Editions - A Timeline
The Fukt open edition lasted 24 hours and ended up with over 10,000 mints at that 0.01 ETH price. The artist commented on the mint, "Max pain is waiting for the reveal," in a head nod to the OG crypto artist XCOPY. Lascaux notably made a donation of 15.84 ETH to Habitat NYC on Dec. 14 as well.
The artwork is similar to that of "Leverage" with a guillotine featured in the center, with a Christmas gift box beneath it, and a character to the right. In Fukt, the character appears to be a man with a Beanie spinner cap, holding a bag that says "Fukt." The guillotine has a bar code on it, with the numbers "4269" and "3169" above - the figures of the winning bids on Lascaux's other 1/1s.
This is the distinctive style and format that each of the first 10 editions will follow, in line with Leverage.
On Dec. 15, Lascaux launched the 2nd edition in the series by airdropping Hookt to 12 bidders from the earlier bidder edition. At just 12 supply, this was a notably smaller edition than Fukt.
Starting Dec. 16, a rapid series of events took place, as the artist put on a masterclass in leveraging burn-to-redeem mechanisms as performance art.
- BURN: 1 Fukt to redeem 1 Hakt
- BURN: 2 Hakt to redeem 1 Crakt
- BURN: 1 Fukt to redeem 1 Erekt
- BURN: 3 Hakt to redeem 1 Mokt
- BURN: 2 Fukt to redeem 1 Tikt
- BURN: 1 Erekt to redeem 1 Stakt
- Free mint: Cookt (400 supply, 1 mint per wallet, allowlist only )
- Paid mint: Punkt (0.06529 price, 699 supply, FCFS)
- Free mint: Trust (1 free mint per Lascaux edition held, 8,683 minted)
Whew. Just typing that order of events was exhausting.
So as of today (12/21/22), there are 11 different editions in the ecosystem. The supplies of each have been determined by the various burns, mints, and community action (with plenty of game theory).
Each piece has its own metadata with a tagline, such as Erekt's "Give me two minutes and I'll be right there," and some have properties, like Erekt's "Grow'r [yes] Show'r [no]." Some taglines and properties have driven community speculation as to the meaning of each piece (see final section).
The paid mint for Punkt on Dec. 20 seemed to be the "end" of the performance, as each of the 10 characters from the "Leverage" 1/1 had been revealed.
And that is why the free mint for Trust last night may be the biggest and most important twist in this saga. A game that many had thought had ended, may have just begun a new chapter.
Now all eyes are on Lascaux's Twitter feed for the mysterious artist's next move (notis on).
This afternoon Lascaux tweeted again, revealing more clues about the future of the game.
A burn is coming on Christmas day that will last for 72 hours (supposedly), and a snapshot will be taken on Dec. 24 at 2 p.m. ET.
You have earned her trust. You have more Fukts to give than I thought.— Lascaux (@Lascauxart) December 22, 2022
There will be no more burns until Christmas day, burn will be open for 72 hours.
Snapshot will be taken 24.12.2022 at 7pm GMT
It appears that the floor prices are starting to dip on the news. It will be interesting to track the movement up until the snapshot and of course in the next burn. The current marketcap for all the editions combined is ~1.59k ETH (~$1.9M), with a total supply of 18,697 NFTs.
While Lascaux has left the editions untouched, the artist has launched a new series of 1/1s called "Lascaux 1/1 FUKT SERIES." They did so after tweeting the cryptic message below:
now I get to play. Have you been naughty or nice? pic.twitter.com/aITuZYClSW— Lascaux (@Lascauxart) December 23, 2022
Two 1/1s have been minted so far, with "Cranberry" transferred to marianamakwaia.eth, and the second called "Maui" transferred to notable Lascaux collector Budfox. Neither were sold, at least publicly.
At 1 p.m. ET today, the artist commented "Finally have everyones attention, but no more pay days for salty artists."
Who are the salty artists? Patrick Amadon? Is it a headfake?
Hopefully we find out in two days time.
Theories and Speculation - Is Lascaux Actually Banksy?
A major driver of the excitement around this project is all the mystery and speculation. Several discords and Twitter group chats have spun up, with collectors sharing tinfoil hat theories spanning who the artist could be to the meaning of the art.
The highest profile theory is the potential tie to Banksy. This stems from Lascaux's tweet on the 24th where the artist name-drops Banksy, though says they are not him.
I can tell you I am not banksy, but you still call me banksy, even when I roast banksy. 1 day left. pic.twitter.com/UnKLBJpNSb— Lascaux (@Lascauxart) November 24, 2022
The imagery and themes of Lascaux's pieces are quite similar to Banksy's style and at minimum an allusion to Banksy's work. Also, the word "Lascaux" is the name of a network of caves in France, which many are tying to Banksy's work "Cave Painting Removal."
Collectors have been speculating that Lascaux = Banksy back from their Noble Card drop, with collector ParaChica calling out the style, the mint price of $60, the monkey artwork, and where the charity proceeds were directed as evidence of ties to Banksy.
Other Theories and Open Questions
Another popular theory is that each of the editions represents a different influencer in the Web3 community. Some are pointing to metadata or the imagery of the characters as the primary tie-in, with a few examples including:
- Punkt metadata: "Decentralization is not free. It's .06529 Ethereum." (Punk6529)
- Stakt metadata and character: Seedphrase, character has top hat (Danny, or Seedphrase)
- Hookt metadata and character: AI and pink hair (Claire Silver)
- Fukt character: Beanie spinner hat (Beanie)
Most of the theories so far revolve around those influencers and how tied in Banksy is. And there are currently many more questions than answers.
Some open questions shared by the growing community:
- Why a guillotine? Who is getting their head chopped off?
- Is Lascaux Banksy? It can't be - can it?
- Will Lascaux be featured in the Memes by 6529's SZN2?
Some of these will be answered, some likely won't. But we will be watching.
One thing is certain - Christmas day is going to be interesting.
How Is Patrick Amadon Tied In?
The notable glitch artist tweeted the following this afternoon, before quickly deleting it:
"The time has nearly come. You will be judged by your choice. Christmas is 2 days away."
Did Amadon accidentally tweet from the wrong account? The artist has a history of tweeting about Lascaux, with a notable tirade back in November complaining about Lascaux using Banksy's style as a "knockoff" and threatening to report to SuperRare leadership.
No, Banksy isn’t making the lame knockoffs that way too many of you think could be his art.— Patrick Amadon (@patrickamadon) November 24, 2022
Even if Amadon is not involved, speculation is growing that there are at least a few artists behind Lascaux.
Anonymoux Weighs In, and Is Artifaction Involved?
Notable art collector Anonymoux (Anonx) has jumped into solving the Lascaux mystery in the past few days, and has brought some new theories into the mix.
Anonx believes the artist may have already released a series on SuperRare foreshadowing their debut as "Lascaux." He goes on to mention that he holds a 1/1 from the artist who he believes is Lascaux, under their real name. And Anonx also speculates that the artist is U.S.-based and not from France, based on time stamps of tweets.
Those in Anonx's comments are calling our Artifaction as being behind Lascaux. This would not be a huge stretch, given Arti is also behind the Noble Cards which Lascaux was involved with in Season 1.
Artifaction did respond to an Anonx tweet, where he describes Lascaux as "more inventive" than Banksy.
Insert double eyeballs emoji.
Hahah. I own both artists. Lascaux is more inventive TBH.— Artifaction² (@Artifaction2) December 23, 2022
This series of events is still unfolding. We at Lucky Trader will do our best to keep covering them, updating this piece as a live blog. If you have any information to share, feel free to reach out to @tyler_did_it on Twitter.
Shoutout to @parachicaa, @CryptoXpresso, @anonscontent, @DrSleazeball, @NFTsins, and @Anonymoux2311 for their help in putting this picture together.