First Gallery In The Middle East Authorised To Accept Cryptocurrency

Digital artwork “Floor” by pioneering generative artist Daniel Canogar

Galloire signs a landmark agreement with Abu Dhabi’s MidChains to become the first major gallery in the Middle East region to accept cryptocurrency for physical or digital art.

Galloire, the innovative contemporary art gallery continues to push forward with the use of technology to enable collectors to connect with its artists and their work. Joining a list of major international galleries such as Pace, Lehmann Maupin and recently Gagosian, Galloire will now accept Bitcoin, Ethereum and USDC for artwork sales globally.

Speaking about the gallery and the principles behind the move, founder Edward Gallagher said;

“We have an absolute belief in the use of technology to bring art to as wide an audience as possible, so by using photorealistic VR and AR you’ve already seen us bring exhibitions from world-famous artists to tens of thousands more people than could have ever seen it in the gallery.

We want more people to connect with contemporary art and also believe in an egalitarian approach to how people want to pay for that art: Why should we force a crypto-native person to pay in traditional (fiat) currency to acquire a beautiful painting, and vice-versa, why should a traditional collector looking to venture into NFTs have to pay in crypto-currency just to access some digital art they fall in love with?”

Founder of Galloire, Edward Gallagher

Over the last few years, the United Arab Emirates has become a leading home for blockchain, and cryptocurrency entrepreneurs and investors, with new legislation easing the way for major companies to set up in the country. The country is also no stranger to major art acquisitions from crypto-wealth as last year saw Sacha Jafri’s record-breaking artwork (the largest canvas painting in history) sold for sixty two million dollars to French crypto-businessman Andre Abdoune.

One of the leading lights in the cryptocurrency and broader virtual asset trading space who have flourished during this period is MidChains. Led by CEO Basil Al Askari and his co-founder Mohamed Al Hashemi, the company has received confident support from global (e.g. MIAX) and regional (e.g. Mubadala and ADQ) heavyweights. Known for its transparency, regulatory compliance and security, MidChains CEO Basil Al Askari said;

“We are a company which prides itself on innovation and being able to provide safe and regulated ways to transact and invest with cryptocurrency, so working with Galloire to enable collectors to invest in art using their preferred cryptocurrency made perfect sense to us. Enabling people to pay securely for a physical asset with a digital asset, especially something as impactful as art, is a huge step forward in the UAE and we have been able to power that today, not in months or years time.”

Founders of MidChains; Basil Al Askari and Mohamed Al Hashemi

Galloire’s Edward Gallagher following up stating;

“We are extremely proud to be working with MidChains in order to facilitate this next step in payment technology. A lot of companies in the UAE are offering to help explore this area or facilitate cryptocurrency payments, but most are not properly licensed to do so. MidChains is fully licensed (ADGM) and regulated (FSRA) to deliver on their promise and we’re delighted to have them as our partner.”

MidChains and Galloire confirmed that systems will be up and running to accept cryptocurrency payments from June, in time for their exhibition from Hong Kong rising art star Carla Chan.

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