Banksy's Painting Didn't Shred as Much as the Artist Intended but It's Fine

Illustration for article titled Banksys Painting Didnt Shred as Much as the Artist Intended but Its Fine
Screenshot: YouTube / Banksy

Don’t know about you but I am tempted to think this Banksy prank was lame. Let me explain!


First we hear that the Banksy painting, “Girl With Balloon,” which self-shredded just after being sold at auction earlier this month for $1.4 million, had doubled in value only hours later, thus adding even more perceived worth to the vapid industry in which it will circulate all its days.

Then we learn that the unnamed buyer decided to keep the piece, which ran through a shredder embedded in the frame (the London auction house that sold the painting, Sotheby’s, claimed to have no knowledge of this). Well now it’s worth more so what do you expect. Actually, it’s a whole new painting! Sotheby’s head of contemporary art in Europe, Alex Branczik said in a statement, “Banksy didn’t destroy an artwork in the auction, he created one.” The new work is called “Love is in the Bin.”


Moving on, now Banksy says, in a video posted to the anonymous artist’s YouTube channel, that the painting didn’t even shred as much as the artist intended (it stopped about halfway through) due to a malfunction. But the stunt went perfectly in rehearsals!

If I were Sotheby’s PR I would be like “a partial destruction is also a partial birth. I believe Da Vinci said that.”

contributing writer, nights

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There was a start and a stop button on that remote, I absolutely don’t believe that the partial shredding was not intended from the beginning. The whole thing is ridiculous. I mean, a brilliant bit of PR, and there’s something to be said about the art itself if we want to go there, but ultimately ridiculous.