The woman who made the winning bid of $1.4 million to purchase "Girl With Balloon," one of the most famous works of art by notorious street artist Banksy, said she plans to keep the painting despite the fact that it self-destructed just after the gavel slammed down ending the auction.
"The buyer, a female European collector and a long-standing client of Sotheby’s, is proceeding with the purchase at the same price as was achieved in the room on the night," the auction house said.
Once the auction had ended, the crowd looked stunned as the painting started to beep and the work of art shredded itself. Banksy admitted to installing a shredder in the frame of the painting years ago in case the work of art was ever auctioned off.
Alex Branczik, Sotheby’s head of contemporary art in Europe, told the Guardian that “Banksy didn’t destroy an artwork in the auction, he created one." While "Girl With Balloon" was destroyed, the work of art lives on and was renamed "Love is in the Bin."
"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.”
The new work of art will likely be worth more than the $1.4 million that the unidentified woman paid for it.
Sotheby's issued a statement on behalf of the buyer: "When the hammer came down last week and the work was shredded, I was at first shocked, but gradually I began to realize that I would end up with my own piece of art history."