Banksy Painting: Who Knew It Was 'Self Destruct'?

Banksy’s Barely Believable Batteries             42 Comments              by      Jenny List

Banksy’s Barely Believable Batteries 42 Comments by Jenny List

The graffiti artist Banksy published a video detailing how his now-infamous artwork destroyed itself after being sold at auction.

According to The Art Newspaper, the final lot of the night, Banksy's 2006 piece Girl With Balloon, had just been sold for £953,829 (roughly $1.77 million) when an alarm bell began to ring.

Banksy took to social media following the shredding, posting a snap of the moment with the caption "going, going gone".

Sotheby's European head of contemporary art Alex Branczik is still trying to get his head around the situation.

Julien's Auctions confirmed the plans to accept bids for Banksy's work after the artist destroyed some of his work in a stunt soon after it was sold for just over 1 million on October 6 at Sotheby's in London.

Banksy is also theorised to not be one person - but rather a collective of artists working around Britain.

Is it really credible that Banksy would give the painting away with an embedded, remote-controlled, battery-operated shredder, that would activate 12 years later?

The incident spurred questions about how Banksy had pulled it off and whether he had been at the auction in disguise.

"He is arguably the greatest British street artist, and tonight we saw a little piece of Banksy genius".

What do you make of Banksy's stunt?

He made that very clear in 2007, when he posted an image on his website of a packed auction room bidding on a framed painting of the words: "I can't believe you morons actually buy this shit".

Sotheby's auction house - where Banksy's art was sold and swiftly destroyed - has said that it is now in discussions with the buyer about what to do next.

The Girl with the Red Balloon is one of Banksy's most famous works, acclaimed as one his "most beautiful". "We are busily figuring out what this means in an auction context".

It doesn't appear to have put off Banksy owners, however, who have contacted after they estimated that the torn-up piece had roughly doubled in value after the stunt. It claims the event shocked the art world, and "certainly marks the first time in auction history that a work of art automatically shredded itself after coming under the hammer". It is not clear who had bought the artwork, as his or her identity has not been disclosed by Sotheby's.

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