It’s hard not to feel like a kid in a candy store when stepping into the Mighty Jaxx studio. With a traditional Chinese signboard, patterned floor tiles and wooden display cases, the entrance foyer to this acclaimed art collectible studio is designed to look like a Peranakan shophouse.
But instead of sweets, a treasure trove of Mighty Jaxx’s collectible toy figurines—many of which easily fetch anywhere between 10 and 30 times their retail value on the secondary market—line the shelves. For those who can tell their Alex Face from their Goin (Thai and French street artists, respectively), this space probably holds some of the most covetable figurines that any urban art aficionado would wish to add to their personal collection.
And founder Jackson Aw is determined to continue pushing the boundaries between toys and art, this time by boldly venturing into the digital arena. In April, hot on the heels of this year’s non-fungible tokens explosion, Mighty Jaxx launched two NFTs: The Beauty of Rebellion by Abell Octovan and The Huntress’ Gaze, alongside the physical collectibles.
“In the Mighty Jaxx context, our NFTs are digital collectibles, but in a different realm,” says Aw. “The owners of our NFTs have full control over their digital, authenticated assets and they can choose if they want to trade it or hold it, or if they want to utilise its ability to take this type of asset and go to another type of digital environment and interact with it. This adds an additional layer to the value of the item and their ownership of it as compared to only being able to interact with a physical collectible only in the physical world.”
Even though NFTs have just broken into the mainstream, Aw has actually been spearheading his company’s digital transformation over the past few years. Since 2019, Mighty Jaxx, which works with international brands including DC Comics, Hasbro and Nickelodeon, has been incorporating blockchain to authenticate the physical collectibles that it produces. So NFTs, says Aw, are the logical next step. “This is almost like the start of the internet, where we are starting to recognise digital assets as true assets with value and true ownership.”