But Scott Hove, a California artist who collaborated with Banksy on his "Dismayland" installation, said Banksy broke new ground in demolishing his own work at auction with no advance warning. With some of the image hanging down in strips, the 2006 work of spray paint on canvas of a girl reaching for a red, heart-shaped balloon was swiftly carried off.
Earlier Saturday, Banksy had posted a photo of the shredded work with a caption, imitating an auctioneer, that read: "going, going, gone".
Girl With Balloon is one of Banksy's most recognisable pieces of work, but onlookers were stunned to watch it self-destruct after it was sold at auction for over £1 million.
The auction house said a female European collector was the successful bidder, agreeing to pay 1.04 million pounds ($1.4 million) for "Girl With Balloon".
"Banksy reminds people that, even in a prominent auction, all his art is fleeting", he added.
In his Instagram post, Banksy that he built the secret device and embedded it into the painting's frame "a few years ago", just "in case it was ever put up for auction".
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"We are busy figuring out what this means in an auction context".
Artist Isaiah King, who is exhibiting at The Other Art Fair in London, said the event was abuzz with news of Banksy's antics.
Banksy fans have matched this up to Gunningham - Rob, short for Robin - or potentially Robert Del Naja, better known as 3D.
The auction house was forced to admit it was "Banksy'ed" after the piece by the mysterious artist self destructed. However, when Banksy does something insane like shredding his own artwork, it will naturally have a dramatic affect on values.
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.
However, instead of becoming worthless after being shredded, the painting has almost doubled in its value since the stunt.