Digital Access

Digital Access
Access and all Shaw Media Illinois content from all your digital devices and receive breaking news and updates from around the area.

Home Delivery

Home Delivery
Local news, prep sports, Chicago sports, local and regional entertainment, business, home and lifestyle, food, classified and more! News you use every day! Daily, Daily including the e-Edition or e-Edition only.

Text Alerts

Text Alerts
Choose your news! Select the text alerts you want to receive: breaking news, prep sports scores, school closings, weather, and more. Text alerts are a free service from, but text rates may apply.

Email Newsletters

Email Newsletters
We'll deliver news & updates to your inbox. Sign up for free e-newsletters today.
Nation & World

Winning bidder will go through with her $1.4 million piece of shredded art

It’s official: Banksy’s “Girl With Balloon” is now a new piece of performative art.

The fate of Banksy’s 2006 spray-paint work has been uncertain since the U.K. street artist’s stunt last Friday at a Sotheby’s auction in London. After selling for $1.4 million, the painting suddenly slipped through a remote-controlled shredder hidden in its frame.

Then the questions began: Would the sale remain valid? Would the winning bidder still even want the altered work? Would its new, half-shredded form be worth less money or more, given its elevated status after the global media attention?

On Thursday, Sotheby’s offered answers.

After a week of negotiations, the winning telephone bidder – which the auction house described in an Instagram post as a “long-standing client” who is a “female European collector” – is going through with her purchase at its original price.

– Tribune News Service

the other half – now simply a skirt of shredded paper fringe – dangles below it. Sotheby’s, which boasts that the new work “was created in our salesroom,” is now calling the piece “the first work in history ever created during a live auction.”

The anonymous buyer says the work marks a seminal event.

“When the hammer came down last week and the work was shredded, I was at first shocked,” she said in a statement, “but gradually I began to realize that I would end up with my own piece of art history.”

To mark the fact that the work, after its transformation, is now an entirely new piece, Banksy has renamed the painting. It’s now: “Love Is in the Bin” (2018). His official authentication body, his company Pest Control, has recertified the work and granted it a new certificate.

There have been questions whether — and to what extent — Banksy may have collaborated with the auction house to pull off the elaborate stunt, which is an anti-capitalist critique of the art market.

But Sotheby’s denies it was involved.

“Were we in on it? Absolutely not,” Sotheby’s head of contemporary art in Europe Alex Branczik posted on Instagram. “Do you really think Banksy, who spent his youth stenciling walls in Bristol and dodging the local authorities, would want to collaborate with the art establishment? … Come on, you should all know better.”

The painting, which was auctioned off as part of Sotheby’s “Frieze Week” contemporary art sale, will this weekend be on view at Sotheby’s New Bond Street galleries in London.

Loading more