Banksy’s Original Plan Was For His Painting to Completely Self-Shred But the Frame Malfunctioned

Banksy Self Shredding Art Sothebys

On October 5, 2018, Sotheby’s Auction House in London sold an original piece of Banksy artwork called “Girl With Balloon”, which fetched a cool £1,042,000 GBP ($1.4 million USD). Unbeknownst to auctioneers, however, the artist had created this piece several years ago with a built-in shredder, which was activated as soon as the gavel dropped. Sotheby’s acted with great speed to stop the process but arrived seconds too late.

The intention was for the piece to completely shred itself, but some sort of malfunction occurred in the circuitry and the machine stopped halfway through the process. Afterwards, Banksy lamented in his behind-the-scenes “Director’s Cut” of this incident, that the shredded had worked perfectly during previous runs. Additionally, the artist reiterated that no one at the auction house knew of his plans

Some people think it didn’t really shred. It did. Some people think the auction house were in on it, they weren’t.

Banksy Worked in Reherasals Every Time

The winning bidder has decided to keep the piece as is, which has since been renamed “Love is in the Bin” and has the distinguished title of the only piece of art ever have been created during the auction process.

Lori Dorn
Lori Dorn

Lori is a Laughing Squid Contributing Editor based in New York City who has been writing blog posts for over a decade. She also enjoys making jewelry, playing guitar, taking photos and mixing craft cocktails.