'We just got Banksy-ed': balloon girl painting self-destructs at sale

The artwork was shredded moment after going under the hammer for $1.7m

So it's not entirely surprising that one of his most famous paintings, Girl With Balloon, selfdestructed after selling for more than $1.86 million at a Sotheby's auction in London. Immediately after the fall of the hammer in the frame turned on the paper shredder, which slashed the canvas to half into small strips.

It shows footage from the auction floor and the bewildered faces of the onlookers as the shredding device activates.

After Saturday's stunt, he borrowed a quote from Picasso and wrote on Instagram: "The urge to destroy is also a creative urge".

Expert valuer Joey Syer told the ES, "We'd estimate Banksy has added at a minimum 50 percent to its value, possibly as high as being worth £2 million-plus".

Following the shredding, Sotheby's senior director Alex Branczik said: "It appears we just got Banksy-ed".

Banksy's painting "Girl with Red Balloon" is seen shredded after its sale at Sotheby auction in London, Britain October 5, 2018 in this still image taken from a video obtained from social media on October 6, 2018. In 2014 Banksy was awarded Person of the Year at the 2014 Webby awards. The buyer has no longer a print, one of many, of the "Girl with Balloon" but a unique Banksy performance piece.

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While it is still being debated around the world what art really is and who it really is for, one artist laid it clear what art should not be.

Branczik says the new work is "the first in history to have been created live during an auction".

A shadowy figure purported to be Banksy in a scene from the film Exit Through The Gift Shop.

"We've had a number of #Banksy print owners contact us today asking if they shred their artwork will it be worth more".

The painting, which was sold to an undisclosed buyer, passed through a concealed shredder within the picture frame as soon as the sale was finalized at an auction at Sotheby's in London. In 2015, the artist conceived "Dismaland" - a haunting exhibit he called a "festival of art, amusements and entry-level anarchism".

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