ibusinesslines.com December 16, 2018

Banksy painting 'self-destructs' in artist's prank at auction

06 October 2018, 02:52 | Myron Mathis

Banksy painting 'self-destructs' in artist's prank at auction

Banksy painting girl with balloon

The 2006 gallery version featured spray paint and acrylic on canvas, mounted on a board.

The victor bid £860,000 (€977,650) - £1,042,000 (€1,184,550) with the buyer's premium - over the phone around 9pm.

"The unexpected incident became instant art world folklore and certainly marks the first time in auction history that a work of art automatically shredded itself after coming under the hammer", the auctioneers added in the statement.

Previously in 2012, a different copy of the "Girl with Balloon" painting sold for between £15,000 - 25,000 GBP (approximately $19,680 - 32,800 USD) at a Bonhams auction. Once the bidding had come to a close on the iconic Banksy piece, the artwork started to sound an alarm and was subsequently destroyed by a shredder hidden within the frame.

Banksy posted a photograph of the moment on his official Instagram account, captioning it: "Going, going, gone..."

"It appears we just got Banksy-ed", said Alex Branczik, Sotheby's senior director and head of contemporary art in Europe.

"We are busily figuring out what this means in an auction context".

"We have not experienced this situation in the past. where a painting spontaneously shredded, upon achieving a record for the artist", Branczik said.

The price paid in London on Friday evening matched the artist's previous record at auction for his "Keep It Spotless" piece in 2008, Sotheby's said.

"Girl With Balloon", which depicts a small child reaching up toward a heart-shaped red balloon, was originally stencilled on a wall in east London and has been endlessly reproduced, becoming one of Banksy's best-known images. They are discussing the next steps to take.

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