Banksy painting 'self-destructs' after selling for $1.4M

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Sotheby's said the buyer of the 2006 work "Balloon Girl", identified only as "a female European collector and a long-standing client of Sotheby's", had made a decision to continue with the purchase at the original price.

Suddenly, Banksy works were fetching tens of thousands of pounds at renowned auction houses and the mysterious street artist was world famous.

However, some auction flipping experts claimed that Banksy's stunt would only cause the value of the shredded painting to increase by about 50 percent more, meaning Banksy might have accidentally increased the value of said painting, despite its state.

Those who believe it was a publicity stunt point out several oddities related to the work.

He shared footage of the prank online, which showed half the painting now hangs in ribbons below the frame. "It was meant to be a criticism of the art market, and I think it's going to double the value of the work".

Girl With Balloon appeared on a wall in Great Eastern Street, London.

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On Friday night, Banksy's "Girl With Balloon" sold for $1.37 million at a Sotheby's auction in London.

He said he had fitted the shredder in case the painting should ever be put up for auction - where its final price set a joint record for his work. He called Banksy's prank "a turning point in the history of contemporary and conceptual art".

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

The work was one of several hundred copies of Banksy's iconic Girl with Balloon.

Julien's Auctions have said that the piece is perfectly safe as are other Banksy pieces open to bidding.

But Scott Hove, a California artist who collaborated with Banksy on his "Dismayland" installation, said Banksy broke new ground in demolishing his own work at auction with no advance warning. We have not experienced this situation the past... where a painting spontaneously shredded, upon achieving a record for the artist.

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