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Banksy said Girl with Balloon was supposed to be shredded completely in new video

The anonymous artist shared a new video on his website on Tuesday

Banksy has suggested the entire £1 million Girl with Balloon, which was partially shredded after being sold at auction, was supposed to have been completely destroyed.

The anonymous artist shared a video on his website on Tuesday, which captured the prank unfold at Sotheby’s in London on 5 October.

Girl With Balloon was bought for £1.04 million by an unknown European art collector, who after the sale and seeing it shredded inside a purpose-built frame said would still go ahead with the deal. She said she thinks the stunt has increased the piece’s value.

Banksy's '2006 Girl with Balloon' was shredded moments after it was sold for over £1m (Instagram/Banksy)
Banksy’s ‘2006 Girl with Balloon’ was shredded moments after it was sold for over £1m (Instagram/Banksy)

Whole painting planned for shredding

In Banksy’s video, entitled Shred the Love, the Director’s Cut, Banksy revealed that “in rehearsals” the shredding had worked “every time”. There’s footage of a test run showing a print passing through the shredder entirely, so that none of the canvas remained intact.

On 5 October, only half of the painting was cut up, and the canvas tassels were left dangling comically from below the frame.

The anonymous artist also said the auction house had not been let into the secret, posting on Instagram: “Some people think it didn’t really shred. It did. Some people think the auction house were in on it, they weren’t.”

The latest three-minute-long video shows a hooded figure constructing the shredder in a workshop, before cutting to the auction, where a pair of hands presses a button in a black box to set off the destruction as soon as the artwork is sold.

A mistake?

After the prank, the piece was granted certification by Pest Control, Banksy’s authentication body. It was given its new title, Love Is In The Bin.

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

The framed, stencil spray painting shows a girl reaching towards a heart-shaped balloon. The gallery version featured spray paint and acrylic on canvas, mounted on a board.

The lot was estimated to sell for £200,000 to £300,000 before the auction.

Additional reporting from PA

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