“Code is a craft. It’s like when the camera was invented – it’s a whole new medium and tool for artists to create artwork.”
Sebastian Sanchez’s current role at Christie’s is a culmination of his life experience. His journey began when he moved from his hometown in Miami to study Design Management at Parsons Design School in New York City, which proved to be an excellent foundation for his future career. During his studies, he secured internships in the e-commerce departments of both MoMA and Christie’s, followed by an internship at the Rubell Family Collection, where he helped conduct research and organize exhibitions.
After another internship as a trends analyst at Artsy and graduating from Parsons, Sebastian worked at a Miami art gallery and other art initiatives before returning to New York. He was offered a full-time position working with traditional artists such as Cindy Sherman, Barbara Kruger, and Rashid Johnson to translate their work into commercial products, ranging from fine jewelry and furniture to homeware and installations.
In 2018, he co-founded ARTXCODE, a generative art house, with Sofia Garcia. In 2019, they mounted their first exhibition at CADAF in New York, showcasing artwork by Dmitri Cherniak and Tyler Hobbs. The exhibition sold out, and they tokenized one of Dmitri’s pieces at the behest of one of the buyers. They continued to showcase generative art in physical form throughout 2019 until early 2020.
When COVID-19 hit, Sebastian and Sofia worked with SuperRare to whitelist artists experimenting with tokenization.
After a few years of working with generative artists, Sebastian took 5 months off to learn software engineering. The immersive program helped him better understand the technical side of code-based art. “Code is a craft. It’s like when the camera was invented – it’s a whole new medium and tool for artists to create artwork.” In 2021, Sebastian helped guide many artists into the NFT space. He also worked with big brands such as Warner Brothers, HBO, and Sony to enter the space and create NFT programs around popular IP.
Coming full circle, Sebastian is now back at Christie’s, where he is at the heart of where traditional meets digital. He aims to elevate curation and bring a more cohesive sense into the digital art space within Christie’s, giving each genre, including generative art, its moment. “Christie’s 3.0 is built entirely on-chain, which is so cool and very technologically advanced,” he says. “Eventually, good art gets discovered, and hopefully, with my knowledge, and having worked with traditional artists and being exposed to that whole world, I can make informed decisions,” says Sebastian. Sebastian has truly brought together the traditional art world and 21st-century NFTs.