Banksy: King of the PR Stunt

Published on 16 October 2018

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We love nothing more than a good PR stunt here at Sketch HQ!

Last week when Banksy, the maverick street artist, shredded his famous piece “Girl with a Balloon” seconds after it was sold at auction we were in awe of his genius.

It is well known that Banksy is not keen on his work being sold at auction. To combat this, he cleverly fitted a secret shredder within the paintings gold frame, on the off chance this piece would someday go on sale.

Seconds after the deal was sealed at Sotheby’s (for £1, 042,000), the secretive artist activated the hidden shredder, destroying more than half of the painting.  As the room filled with gasps, Alex Branczik, Sotheby’s senior director and head of contemporary art in Europe, said “It appears we just got Banksy-ed,”  He would be right!

Banksy posted on his Instagram to mark the occasion with a photograph with the simple caption “Going, going, gone…”

Followed by a video giving us an insight into him making the famous shredder with the caption “The urge to destroy is also a creative urge” – Picasso


By executing this stunt not only has Banksy created shock waves around the art world, but he has also created a whole new work of art.  The piece has been re-named “Love is in the Bin” and been certified by Pest Control, the artist’s authentication body.

Additionally, experts are predicting that this piece is now worth double, an estimated £2m plus!  This may not have been the result Banksy was after but in terms of a PR stunt, it wins on all levels.

In our eyes, Banksy can do no wrong!