Banksy Painting Self-Destructs After Netting $1.4 Million at Sotheby's London

10 October, 2018, 10:46 | Author: Cecil Buchanan
  • The artwork was shredded moment after going under the hammer for $1.7m

Banksy's painting "Girl with Red Balloon" is seen shredded after its sale at Sotheby auction in London, Britain October 5, 2018 in this still image taken from a video obtained from social media on October 6, 2018. While the act may have been in protest of the art market and the exorbitant prices paid for works of art at auction, experts declare that the value of the piece will most likely increase as a result of the performance.

"A man dressed in black sporting sunglasses and a hat was seen scuffling with security guards near the entrance to Sotheby's shortly after the incident", Art Newspaper also reported.

Earlier Saturday, Banksy had posted a photo of the shredded work with a caption, imitating an auctioneer, that read: "going, going, gone".

"It appears we just got Banksy-ed", said Alex Branczik, Sotheby's head of contemporary art for Europe, in a press release accompanied by photos of the freaky episode. He also added to the swirling debate by suggesting auction house Sotheby's may have been a party to the whole escapade, pointing to oddities about how the work was displayed and why they did not pick up on the work's unusually thick frame.

The ever-elusive, ever-inventive Banksy has once again made a fool of the art world, and captivated millions.

Obviously, they warned people not to shred their artwork.

The video showed images of a shredder being implanted into a picture frame along with footage of Friday's auction finale.

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But just seconds after the hammer came down, the painting itself whirred into life, and fed through a shredder which had been secretly installed inside the gold frame.

The auction house said it was "in discussion about next steps" with the buyer, whose identity was not disclosed.

The work was one of several hundred copies of Banksy's iconic Girl with Balloon.

"It was a brilliant PR stunt", Offer Waterman, a dealer in 20th-century British art, who attended the art auction, told The New York Times.

"We are busy figuring out what this means in an auction context". The graffiti artist's pieces have commented on a slew of issues from the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Europe's migrant crisis, war, and consumerism, among other issues.

BANKSY'S identity is one of the biggest mysteries in Britain - so who is the mysterious street artists behind the latest Girl With Balloon stunt?

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