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Famous Shredded Banksy Work Is Back With A New Name

Girl With Balloon, the Banksy work that made headlines after it was shredded, is back after getting renamed a second time.

Girl With Balloon was a 2006 work by the mysterious street artist Banksy. In 2018, it went on sale at Sotheby’s London. The work was sold for the highest bid of £1.04 million ($1 million), excluding auction fees. However, as soon as the final bid was hammered, a mechanism within the painting’s frame was triggered, causing half of the painting to get shredded. At the time, Pest Control – the studio owned by Banksy – renamed the work to ‘Love is in the Bin’, while also re-dating it to 2018 (instead of the previous 2006). Sotheby’s also issued a certificate of authenticity to it; essentially, the half-shredded painting became a brand-new work.

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The re-titled painting returned to Sotheby’s auction block in 2021. This time, the work fetched a massive £16 million (£18.5 million after including fees) – a record for the underground artist. However, it is now revealed that the work was re-titled once more after the sale. Now called ‘Girl without Balloon’, the work was also re-dated to 2021. Sotheby’s itself seemed to only become aware of this change after a recent auction in South Korea last August, where the painting was part of the catalog. Pest Control is once again behind the name change, though they did not reveal the reasons behind the action. It is also unclear if the re-titled work received a new certificate of authenticity. As such, this causes a confusing situation where the same painting exists in the market with two different names and dates.