Banksy destroyed one of his iconic works, Girl with Balloon, at Sotheby’s Contemporary Art Evening Auction last Friday. After the painting was hammered down at £860,000, the street artist activated the shredder that he had built into the frame of the painting. It soon caused a huge sensation in the art world and aroused many suspicions whether Sotheby’s had any prior knowledge to the stunt.
The auction house announced yesterday that the painting has a new title, Love is in the Bin, and the buyer has decided to proceed with the purchase at the same price. Love is in the Bin will be on view to the public on 13 and 14 October.
The original work Girl with Balloon
The moment when the painting passed through a hidden shredder
The auction house staff removed the painting after the incident
Banksy uploaded a video detailing how he installed a shredded into the frame
Banksy’s Girl with Balloon was sold for £1.04m (US$1.4 million) after premium, tying the artist’s record in pounds at auction previously achieved in 2008. Moments after the hammer was brought down, an alarm sound went off. Girl with Balloon, which was hung on a wall near the back entrance, began to pass through a hidden shredder.
The stunt dominated international headlines and took the art world by storm. Responding to the widespread speculation, Sotheby’s insisted that it was not in on the ruse. Banksy posted a video on Instagram detailing how he installed a shredded into the frame a few years ago and the video has now attracted 11m views. The half-shredded painting is now expected to be worth at least 50% higher, possibly as high as being worth £2m or even more.
An official statement released by Sotheby’s on Instagram
There is a fan theory suggesting that Banksy could be Robert Del Naja, member of the band Massive Attack
Sotheby’s released a statement yesterday that a new work was created in the process of ‘destroying the artwork’. The piece, newly titled Love is in the Bin, has become the first artwork in history to have been created live during an auction. The new work has been granted a certificate by Pest Control, Banksy’s authentication body.
The buyer, a female European collector, is proceeding with the purchase at the same price of £1.04m. The buyer commented: “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.”
Love is in the Bin
Love is in the Bin will be on view to the public in Sotheby’s New Bond Street galleries in London on Saturday and Sunday 13th and 14th October.