Street artist Banksy made waves last week (October 5, 2018) when he pranked Sothebys during an auction of his “Girl with Balloon” painting, which included a mechanism in the frame that shredded half of the canvas shortly after it was sold.
Following the stunt, questions arose about whether the Sothebys was in on the prank and whether Banksy intended the painting to shred only partially. As some observed, the girl was left in pieces but the heart remained intact.
Banksy followed up on the event with a YouTube video on October 17th explaining that Sotheby’s was not involved and his intent was for the entire painting to be shredded. The video included clips of the artist testing the shredder with a “Girl with Balloon” print.
On Instagram he also posted a video and wrote in the caption, “Some people think it didn’t really shred. It did. Some people think the auction house were in on it, they weren’t.”
The half-shredded “Girl with Balloon” painting is now viewed as worth more than the original. The woman who purchased the painting has chosen to keep it. Described by Sotheby‘s as a “female European collector and longstanding Sotheby’s client,” the owner of the painting is quoted as saying, “When the hammer came down last week and the work was shredded, I was at first shocked, but gradually I began to realise that I would end up with my own piece of art history.”
Following the event, the new work was retitled “Love Is in the Bin” by Pest Control, an organization that authenticates Banksy’s work.
Check out Banksy’s Instagram and YouTube video below.
“Some people think it didn’t really shred. It did.”
“The Director’s Cut”