Wu-Tang Clan’s Rare Album Once Upon a Time in Shaolin to Be Played at Australian Art Museum

8370

Once Upon a Time in Shaolin, the Wu-Tang Clan album whose sole copy was purchased by Martin Shkreli in 2015 and later resold at auction, will receive its first public playbacks at listening events next month. The series takes place at Australia’s Museum of Old and New Art (MONA) as part of its Namedropping exhibition. In addition to listening events for a 30-minute excerpt of the album, the physical record, housed in a silver box, will be on display.

The museum’s director of curatorial affairs, Jarrod Rawlins, said in a press release, “Every once in a while, an object on this planet possesses mystical properties that transcend its material circumstances. Once Upon a Time in Shaolin is more than just an album, so when I was thinking about status, and what a transcendent namedrop could be, I knew I had to get it into this exhibition.”

A contract stipulates that the album—now owned by digital art collective Pleasr—cannot be commercially exploited until 2109, but it can be played at private listening events such as MONA’s. The exhibition runs from June 15-24.

Once Upon a Time in Shaolin in 2015, photo by Luke Fenstemaker and courtesy of Luke Fenstemaker, Pleasr, and the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA)
Once Upon a Time in Shaolin in 2015, photo by Jon Lynn and courtesy of Jon Lynn, Pleasr, and the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA)
Once Upon a Time in Shaolin in 2015, photo by Luke Fenstemaker and courtesy of Luke Fenstemaker, Pleasr, and the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA)
Once Upon a Time in Shaolin in 2015, photo by Jon Lynn and courtesy of Jon Lynn, Pleasr, and the Museum of Old and New Art (MONA)