This year, Wimbledon’s Centre Court turns 100. A century ago in 1922, the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club vacated residence at Worple Road to a new home at Church Road, now the spiritual home of tennis.
To recognise the storied history that has unfolded upon the now hallowed turf, the AELTC has announced the release of The Centenary Collection – ten digital masterpiece collectibles, minted on the blockchain, for tennis fans and collectors to call their own.
AELTC Communications and Marketing Director, Alexandra Willis, says the collection aims to edify the decades that have made Centre Court one of international sport’s most iconic stages.
“To celebrate 100 years of Centre Court with these unique digital collectibles, minted as NFTs, is a lovely contrast. Not only does this collection reflect the past, but, through the use of an innovation that has only begun to develop in the last 12 months, we are looking to the future, a timely reminder that how fans interact with sport will continue to evolve.
“It has been a great privilege for us to work on the creation of these artworks, which not only demonstrate a fascinating approach to memorialising these incredible passages of time, but with such beauty and creativity that they are worthy of the walls of the All England Club itself,” says Willis.
The Collection has been curated by Glorious Digital, a New Zealand based digital art studio and marketplace. Chief Executive Tim Harper says the artworks take inspiration not just from the on court history, but also from the culture, art, fashion and events of each decade.
“Wimbledon is treasured by one of the world’s largest and most dedicated assemblage of fans, many of whom will already enjoy an appreciation of digital art. With these fans in mind, Glorious has worked with the AELTC to craft a masterpiece Centenary Collection immortalising the magnificent history and legacy of Centre Court.
“Through the Wimbledon archives, we rediscovered photographs that capture some of The Championship’s most iconic moments. We then returned the images to a film contact sheet and enhanced them with handwritten calligraphy to illuminate the stories within. It was an intensive process, but well worth it – we are very proud of the result,” says Harper.
With each 1/100 for the 10 decades priced at £500, it’s likely the Collection will be quickly absorbed into Wimbledon’s global fanbase of millions, especially when a small number of the editions have already been whitelisted for some unnamed VIPs and a random selection within the Glorious Founding Membership.
Hopeful buyers will need to enter a ballot via HERE for the right to purchase.
Ballot entries will close on Middle Sunday, 3 July. Randomised entries will be drawn in the following days. Successful purchasers will be notified by email and have 48 hours to complete their purchase. If payment is not received within that time their successful ballot will be reallocated to another entrant.
To add to the excitement, purchasers cannot choose which decade of artwork they want to purchase. They’ll discover which masterpiece they have purchased on 10 July, the last day of the tournament, when The Centenary Collection will be officially released.
The Championships 2022 begin Monday 27 June with the Centenary Collection ballot opening on Monday June 13.