Auction record set by shredded Banksy painting
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Auction record set by sale of shredded Banksy painting
‘Love is in the Bin’, the remains of Banksy’s famous piece ‘Girl With Balloon’, were auctioned off at Sotheby’s, London, for a record £ 18,582,000 (€ 21,194,000). It was expected to sell for between £ 4m and £ 6m (€ 4.7m and € 7.07m), but this huge bid is a record for any work by the famous anonymous street artist.
This work was what was left of the original “Girl With Balloon” which – in an incredible feat of performance art – was shredded immediately after the acceptance of its final offer and the hammer blow in 2018. A buyer Anonymous, a European woman, had offered £ 1million (1.17 million euros) for the Banksy piece, at the exact same auction house in London.
Suddenly an alarm bell rang and, in front of a stunned crowd, a shredder that had been hidden deep within the large Victorian-style frame of the painting began to pull the canvas in and eat it. When the grinder stopped, only the upper part of the painting remained inside the frame, representing a red heart-shaped balloon, on a white background.
Sotheby’s Asia Modern and Contemporary Art President Alex Branczik said: “It has been almost three years to the day since one of the most ingenious moments in performance art of this century entered auction history. Banksy is no stranger to making headlines, and this latest chapter in his story has captured the imaginations of the world – we can only begin to guess what might follow.
Oliver Barker, the Sotheby’s auctioneer who sold the painting, after dropping his hammer on the winning auction, jokingly commented that the artwork was “still there, I can’t believe it” .
This image had become one of Banksy’s most famous images and was originally stenciled on a wall in east London. Many copies have been reproduced since, but the real piece that was shredded had been placed in Germany since 2019, on loan to the Staatsgalerie museum in Stuttgart.
The riddle that is Banksy first emerged via a series of satirical graffiti that kept appearing mysteriously on buildings scattered across the UK. We do not know who the anonymous artist is, as reported theguardian.com.
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