Banksy’s Shredded Artwork Resold for $25.4Million USD

Alexander Scheuber / Getty Images

Banksy’s “Girl with Balloon,” a painting of a girl in an arm-folding pose and in front of a red balloon, was the last lot at Sotheby’s $2.9 million sale. The artwork then passed through a shredder hidden in its frame that seemed to destroy it in full view of shocked bidders.

The work, one of Banksy’s most iconic images, was the final lot in the “Frieze Week” sale at Sotheby’s. The British street artist known for his stencil-based paintings shocked an art world audience who had gathered to see his painting, which has appeared on streets around the world, sell for perhaps $2 million.

After being shredded by a concealed mechanism in its frame it sold Thursday night to an anonymous buyer who immediately resold it Saturday morning for 1 million pounds ($1.4 million). The spray paint and acrylic painting on canvas measures 2 feet by 3 feet — or 60cm by 90cm — according to Sotheby’s. It depicts a girl reaching out toward a red heart