New Banksy Video Shows That Frame Was Supposed to Shred Entire Painting
A new video from Banksy shows his “Girl With Balloon” picture frame outfitted with a secret paper shredder didn’t work exactly as planned. When the artist pressed the button to move the picture through the shredder, moments after it sold for just over £1 million ($1.4 million) at a London auction, the painting unexpectedly stopped moving halfway through.
In a new video uploaded on this week called “Shredding the Girl and Balloon - The Director’s Cut” (as seen above), the anonymous artist is seen constructing the picture frame and placing a shredding mechanism inside. The work first appeared in 2002 as a graffiti in the United Kingdom, with the piece in the frame produced in 2006. In a previous video detailing the plan, Banksy explained that he “secretly” built the shredder into the frame “in case it was ever put up for auction.” With the second video, Banksy revealed that he used a handheld remote to activate the mechanism during the Sotheby’s auction on October 5, but it stopped halfway through. The video displays a message that “in rehearsals it worked every time.”
The work was purchased by a European art collector and a client of the auction house. She described her reaction as “at first shocked, but gradually I began to realize that I would end up with my own piece of art history.” The piece is now entitled “Love is in the Bin,” and it’s been granted a certificate of authenticity by Banksy’s official body Pest Control. The new work was displayed at the New Bond Street galleries in London days after its creation, on October 13 and 14.
“Banksy didn’t destroy an artwork in the auction, he created one,” Alex Branczik, Sotheby’s head of contemporary art in Europe, said in a statement at the time. “Following his surprise intervention on the night, we are pleased to confirm the sale of the artist’s newly-titled Love is in the Bin, the first artwork in history to have been created live during an auction.”
While the original, un-shredded version was expected to sell at auction for between £200,000 ($260,000) to £300,000 ($390,000), Joey Syer of MyArtBroker.com told the media that the piece is now worth about 50 percent more than its final auction price, potentially placing it as high as £2 million ($2.6 million).
One has to wonder if the next Banksy work sold at auction will also include a shredder that is activated by a remote control that actually works. Or perhaps, another change agent will be hidden in the frame.