The iconic image of a girl reaching out for a red, heart-shaped balloon, sold for $1.4 million.
Following the shredding, Sotheby's senior director Alex Branczik said: "It appears we just got Banksy-ed". And in true satirical Banksy fashion, he quoted artist Picasso in his caption: "the urge to destroy is also a creative urge". He has now posted a video showing us how he installed the shredder in the frame of the artwork, just in case it went on sale.
There is a speculation that the auctioneers were aware that a shredder was hidden in the painting.
The auction house said it would be discussing next steps with the buyer over the coming days, but some experts say the stunt would cause the shredded work of art to increase in value.
On Friday night, Banksy's "Girl With Balloon" sold for $1.37 million at a Sotheby's auction in London.
Never had we seen such a scene during an auction. Although he is one of the world's best-known contemporary artists, Banksy has always had a mixed relationship with fame, even anonymously. A few years back he published an image on his website mocking an auction house and their clients for bidding for the framed words "I can't believe you morons actually buy this sh*t".
"It's a performance in the line of Marcel Duchamp's "Ready Made", he said speaking of a term coined by the French artist in 1915 to describe a sometimes modified, but always common object, not usually thought of as a work of art.
However it was years before that rumours about Del Naja began to swirl when Banksy works popped up in cities where Massive Attack were touring at the same time. Alternatively, was it the ultimate act of rebellion, Banksy pulling the rug out from under the buyer and reasserting his control over his work by destroying its value the moment it changed hands?