Street-artist, political activist and graffiti extraordinaire Banksy has made a nuisance, sorry, name for himself over the years with his thought-provoking and often socially conscious works of art that seem to pop up right where you least expect them.

The anonymous artist – who hides his real identity much like Superman does – has come a long way since his early days of face swapping ten pound notes, with his career, at least in my opinion, hitting a high with his ingenious bemusement park, ‘Dismaland’ which attracted plenty of attention when it opened in 2015.

In case you missed it, his latest stunt involved his famous ‘Girl With Red Balloon’ painting, which recently hit headlines after it “self-destructed” moments after selling at auction.

The painting, which depicts, yep, you guessed it, a girl holding a big red balloon (art, ey), was at Sotheby’s in London on Friday where it sold for a mouth-watering £1m, right before it shredded and came out of the bottom in neat little strips in front of a shocked audience.

Imagine the look on the face of the highest bidder when they saw their latest purchase being destroyed like that.

They’d be gutted, right?

Well, perhaps not, because it seems the rich really do get richer.

Art ‘experts’ (I say it like that because I’m highly cynical some of these people actually have a clue what they’re talking about) reckon that the shredded version might actually fetch even more money than the original, non-shredded version.

Joey Syer, co-founder of www.MyArtBroker.com, and one of those aforementioned ‘experts’ told The Evening Standard:

“Today said that the shredded artwork could now have doubled in value. Girl with Balloon is one of the most iconic images of recent times. It’s seen some of the sharpest price increases over previous years with signed/unsigned prints and canvass showing an average of +20% yoy. Prices now are regularly exceeding £115,000 for signed authenticated prints.”

He added:

“The auction result will only propel this further and given the media attention this stunt has received, the lucky buyer would see a great return on the £1.02m they paid last night, this is now part of Art History in its shredded state and we’d estimate Banksy has added at a minimum 50% to it’s value, possibly as high as being worth £2m+.”

In case you were wondering how Banksy pulled off such a feat, you’re in luck, because the artist recently shared a video online explaining how he did it.

We’ve included it below because we’re good to you like that.

I suppose it’s pretty clever how he did it, but the fact it actually increased in value after shredding it perfectly sums up the art world to me.

Like, he’s physically destroyed something of his, making it infinitely worse yet somehow it’s actually worth more.

I wonder if I’d start getting paid more if I sabotaged my articles.

*Could I write a load of four letter expletives throughout this piece?*

Nah, better not.