Published: Sat, October 13, 2018
Arts&Culture | By Kristi Paul

Sale on for Banksy painting that self-destructed at auction

Sale on for Banksy painting that self-destructed at auction

UK-based artist Banksy arranged one of his well-known painting Girl With Balloon to self-destruct by shredding itself soon after it was auctioned for $1.4 million.

Turns out, Banksy customized the frame himself and secretly built in a portable shredder in the frame of the 2006 painting just in case it got sold for millions at an auction.

The art world is in still in a frenzy over the shocking prank pulled by mysterious artist, Banksy at an auction held in the prestigious Sotheby's on Friday 5 October 2018. The sale price equalled the artist's previous auction record of about $1.35 million.

"When the hammer came down last week and the work was shredded, I was at first shocked", she said in a statement, "but gradually I began to realize that I would end up with my own piece of art history".


The announcement follows a week of negotiation between the buyer and the auction house and unprecedented speculation over the stunt.

Yesterday, Banksy posted a video on his Instagram account explaining how he installed the shredder in the frame without anyone knowing. "It was meant to be a criticism of the art market, and I think it's going to double the value of the work".

The auction house was not immediately available for comment on the whereabouts of the painting's remains, or how its value might have changed in light of its self-destruction.

John Brandler, director of Brandler Art Galleries, told the BBC that Banksy is "the ultimate publicity artist", calling the stunt "absolutely brilliant".


A year later, he released an inflatable doll dressed as a Guantánamo Bay prisoner at Disneyland in California.

Banksy is well known for his anti-establishment street art which often points a satirical finger at the world as it is today.

The angle from which the man was filming could also correspond to the angle used in Banksy's video version of events.


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