Christie's is auctioning off a collection of nine CryptoPunks next month

Major auction house Christie's will sell a collection of nine CryptoPunks – widely considered to be the first non-fungible token (NFT) projects released on the Ethereum blockchain – in a sale next month.

According to an announcement published Thursday, the auction house will auction off a sample of the popular NFT project at its 21st Century Evening Sale on May 13 in New York. Specifically, CryptoPunk founders Matt Hall and John Watkinson are selling the nine CryptoPunks from their own collections.

"Taken together, the set represents both the rarest possible CryptoPunks and highlights from the variety of attributes that are the signature of the project," Hall and Watkinson said in a statement published by the auction house.

Like the recent Beeple NFT sale, Christie's will accept bids and payments in the form of ether, Ethereum's native cryptocurrency. 

"The CryptoPunks are the alpha and omega of the CyptoArt movement," Christie's art specialist Noah Davis said in a statement. "This is a historic sale."

Released in June 2017 by software company Larva Labs, CryptoPunks features a collection of 24x24 8-bit-style pixel images. In total, there are 10,000 unique collectible characters. Proof of ownership for each character is recorded in a contract on the Ethereum blockchain. Each of the unique characters sports different characteristics, accessories, and traits, and some CryptoPunks are considered rarer than others. 

Image taken from Christie's via CryptoPunks.