Banksy 'Girl With Balloon' Painting Worth Double After Self-Destructing at Auction

Banksy’s Barely Believable Batteries             42 Comments              by      Jenny List

But Scott Hove, a California artist who collaborated with Banksy on his "Dismayland" installation, said Banksy broke new ground in demolishing his own work at auction with no advance warning.

After destroying his own artwork in the most Banksy of Bansky-esque stunts at Sotheby's auction house in London over the weekend, the Evening Standard reports that the piece has since doubled in value. With some of the image hanging down in strips, the 2006 work of spray paint on canvas of a girl reaching for a red, heart-shaped balloon was swiftly carried off.

Following the shredding, Sotheby's senior director Alex Branczik said: "It appears we just got Banksy-ed".

Banksy later posted a video of the self-destructing painting on Instagram in which he claimed he equipped the frame with a shredder in case the painting was ever sold.

"The post was captioned: "'The urge to destroy is also a creative urge' - Picasso". Onlookers stood petrified as the canvas passed through a shredder, operated by a remote-control mechanism, installed in the frame.

The painting soared to a final price of £1,042,000 ($1,357,726), equalling the auction record for a Banksy work originally set back in 2008. "Other copies of the painting have been auctioned over the years".

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That's exactly why artist Banksy is making headlines.

"You'd nearly wonder if he'd recognize the fact that it would've doubled the value of the work", Benrimon adds. But perhaps the most improbable notion of all is that anyone truly feels that this most rote and replicated Bansky image is worth either a million dollars or a great deal of kerfuffle about its sensational destruction.

Suddenly, Banksy works were fetching tens of thousands of pounds at renowned auction houses and the mysterious street artist was world famous.

Maybe It's both a subversive artist statement and a publicity stunt-and basically everyone, from the artist to the buyer to those who witnessed the shredding in real time to us watching it now, wins. It is not clear who had bought the artwork, as his or her identity has not been disclosed by Sotheby's.

Another 20 percent of people think Banksy is an artist called Robin Gunningham and 13 percent believe he is the artist Robert Del Naja. In that a shredder concealed within--as Banksy later confirmed through a video--ripped the artwork into shreds as the gathering first gasped in disbelief and shock, and then cries "It's so cool" could be heard above the din.

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