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Shredded Banksy artwork sells for $25.4 million at auction

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Shredded Banksy artwork sells for $25.4 million at auction

LONDON — A work by British street artist Banksy that sensationally self-shredded just after it sold at auction three years ago fetched almost 18.6 million pounds ($25.4 million) on Thursday — a record for the artist, and close to 20 times its pre-shredded price.

“Love is in the Bin” was offered by Sotheby’s in London, with a presale estimate of 4 million pounds to 6 million pounds ($5.5 million to $8.2 million).

After a 10-minute bidding war involving nine bidders in the saleroom, online and by phone, it sold for three times the high estimate to an undisclosed buyer. The sale price of 18,582,000 pounds ($25,383,941) includes an auction-house fee known as a buyer’s premium.

The piece consists of a half-shredded canvas in an ornate frame bearing a spray-painted image of a girl reaching for a heart-shaped red balloon.

When it last sold at Sotheby’s in October 2018, the piece was known as “Girl With Balloon.” Just as an anonymous female European buyer made the winning bid — for 1 million pounds ($1.4 million) — a hidden shredder embedded in the frame by Banksy whirred to life, leaving half the canvas hanging from the frame in strips.

Sotheby’s received some criticism at the time for failing to spot the hidden shredder. But the 2018 buyer decided to go through with the purchase, a decision that was vindicated on Thursday as the work’s price soared.

The work quickly became one of Banksy’s most famous, and Sotheby’s sent it on tour to cities including New York and Hong Kong before Thursday’s auction.

Auctioneer Oliver Barker joked that he was “terrified” to bring down the hammer to end Thursday’s sale. There were jitters among Sotheby’s staff to the last that Banksy had another surprise planned.

Alex Branczik. Sotheby’s chairman of modern and contemporary art, called the shredding “one of the most ingenious moments of performance art this century.”

“It has been a whirlwind to follow the journey of this now legendary piece and to have it back in our midst, offering it tonight in the very room it was created by the artist,” Branczik said. “Banksy is no stranger to making headlines and this latest chapter in his story has captured imaginations across the world — we can only begin to guess what might come next.”

Banksy, who has never confirmed his full identity, began his career spray-painting buildings in Bristol, England, and has become one of the world’s best-known artists. His mischievous and often satirical images include two male police officers kissing, armed riot police with yellow smiley faces and a chimpanzee with a sign bearing the words, “Laugh now, but one day I’ll be in charge.”

Several of his works have sold for multiple millions at auction. In March, a Banksy mural honoring Britain’s health workers, first painted on a hospital wall, sold for 16.8 million pounds ($23.2 million) at a Christie’s auction, until Thursday a record for the artist.

“Girl With Balloon” was originally stenciled on a wall in east London and has been endlessly reproduced, becoming one of Banksy’s best-known images.

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Column: Justin Fields is set to return after missing 2 games with cracked ribs — and the Chicago Bears and their rookie quarterback are in search of a little respect

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Column: Justin Fields is set to return after missing 2 games with cracked ribs — and the Chicago Bears and their rookie quarterback are in search of a little respect

Justin Fields has the same vibe that most Chicago Bears fans have come to experience.

They’re not getting any respect.

The only thing the rookie quarterback and the Bears (4-8) can do to change the narrative is to win some of their five remaining games, beginning Sunday night against the Green Bay Packers (9-3) at Lambeau Field.

Fields this week was medically cleared to return from three cracked ribs and will start against the Packers after being knocked out of the Nov. 21 loss to the Baltimore Ravens and missing the next two games.

“I just think a lot of the times teams maybe don’t respect us or don’t give us credit,” Fields said. “I mean, you can’t blame them. We messed up sometimes in the games and we’ve pretty much messed up in a lot of games. … We’re going to attack every game like it’s our last game and we’re going to play through it all.”

The Bears are not getting much respect from the oddsmakers in Las Vegas as 12½-point underdogs, but that comes with the territory in this series. The Packers have won the last five meetings and 20 of the previous 23.

Maybe the Bears can sneak up on the Packers or other remaining opponents — the Minnesota Vikings (twice), New York Giants and Seattle Seahawks. The Bears figure to be favored only against the Giants.

“It feels good,” Fields said. “I like being the underdog. It just gives me an extra chip on my shoulder. I like when people doubt me. That just gives me a little extra motivation. So I love it.”

Being an underdog is new for Fields — he was 20-2 as the starter at Ohio State — but it’s all part of his maturation process in the NFL. The most important thing: He was cleared, meaning the Bears do not believe he’s at risk for more serious injury.

Fields said he’s still not certain when the injury occurred against the Ravens and didn’t believe it was on his final play. He said he normally wears protective padding on his midsection and will do so against the Packers.

“I’m going to have to be smart this upcoming game with not taking as many hits as I usually do,” he said.

“There’s pain there, but I mean, the pain’s just not unbearable. I know there’s going to be pain there, but it is what it is. As long as it’s just not crazy pain where I can’t bear it, I’m going to play and practice.”

Fields threw for 174 yards and a touchdown with one interception and four sacks when the Packers defeated the Bears 24-14 on Oct. 17 at Soldier Field. That started a five-game losing streak, and the organization has been in turmoil since.

The best way to calm the storm, if only temporarily, would be to stun the Packers, and the only chance the Bears have of rolling off some victories in the stretch run is getting their offense rolling.

“We really feel like he was improving as the games went by for him individually, our team, our offense,” coach Matt Nagy said. “There are still places where we can certainly improve. As a staff, we felt like we were really getting a good feel for where he was, and then he gets injured. So then for him to come back against a big division opponent and rival, I know that he’s excited for it.”

Meanwhile, Nagy was cryptic when describing a left hand injury that kept Andy Dalton out of practice Wednesday. Nagy declined to say whether Dalton suffered a broken hand, which a source said was the fear. The team plans to evaluate Dalton’s pain tolerance and possible swelling to determine if he or Nick Foles will serve as the No. 2 quarterback in Green Bay.

The Bears hope two weeks on the sideline gave Fields a different perspective that allowed him to get a slightly better feel for what to expect from opposing defenses — and maybe small elements of situational football that he can apply while he searches for the consistency that has been missing for the offense.

“I think he’s just, like most young players, you sometimes have got to go through some ups and downs and navigate your way through that,” Packers coach Matt LaFleur said. “But he’s a very confident guy. He’s obviously very, very talented, not only as a thrower, but he’s got the added element that you can’t account for — his ability to make the off-schedule play.

“He’s more comfortable in what they’re doing. He’s a heck of a challenge to defend.”

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5 Colorado spas that offer everything from soaks in beer to Himalayan salt room saunas

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5 Colorado spas that offer everything from soaks in beer to Himalayan salt room saunas

Take a tour of The Stanley Hotel in Estes Park and you’ll hear about how Freelan Oscar Stanley – a hotelier and, more famously, inventor of the Yankee steam-powered car – originally came to Colorado on doctor’s orders. Stricken with tuberculosis, Stanley arrived here at the start of the 20th century with optimism that the fresh and dry air, high altitude and ample sunshine would heal him.

Stanley, who survived TB, was just one of many “lungers” who migrated to Colorado seeking a cure. Others who moved here believed the burbling hot springs had healing powers that could treat a variety of ailments. In all, state historians estimate as many as one-third of Colorado’s early settlers moved to the Centennial State for reasons associated with health.

“More came to Colorado for their health than for silver or gold,” says Tom Noel, a state historian who is known as “Dr. Colorado.”

That is to say wellness has deep roots in the state. Several historic destinations and landmarks, including The Broadmoor Hotel and Resort in Colorado Springs and the Colorado Chautauqua in Boulder, were founded as health retreats. Today, the many hot springs and spas, overall active lifestyle, crisp mountain air, and many days of sunshine (and the list goes on) continue to appeal to residents and visitors alike.

After an especially tough year and a half, Colorado’s wellness destinations are seeing an increase in people who want a restorative vacation, whether for a day or a week. Guests are seeking out “travel therapy,” says James Gibson, president of Garden of the Gods Resort and Club, which has a front row seat to the scenic Garden of the Gods Park in Colorado Springs. The resort is home to the STRATA Integrated Wellness and Spa, where Western and Eastern medical science coexist on its treatment menu.

“We are extraordinarily grateful for the power of place here at Garden of the Gods Resort and Club,” Gibson says. The sandstone rock formations that jut into the blue skies, he says, instantly evoke feelings of tranquility and ease.

From sudsy soaks at a beer spa in Denver to pampering “done right” at one of the original spas in the West, here are five ways to experience wellness travel in a state that helped invent it.

Provided by The Broadmoor

The Broadmoor Spa offers a steam room, sauna, aromatherapy room and lounge that are gender specific as well as coed lounge areas that are complimentary with scheduled spa treatment services. Also available are a fitness center, indoor pool and outdoor whirlpool.

The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs

When this luxury resort opened in 1918, it had one of the first spas in the country with dedicated space for both men and women. At the time, guests were advised to dress in their rooms and take the service elevator directly to the baths in The Broadmoor’s “thermo hydrotherapeutic department” (aka spa). A half-hour massage cost a buck and visitors paid $1.50 for a Turkish bath and steam room visit, according to Krista Heinicke, public relations manager and resident historian.

The Broadmoor’s world-traveling founders, Spencer and Julie Penrose, wanted health and wellness to be a centerpiece experience at their resort, where European opulence meets rugged outdoor adventures. Today, guests can fill their itineraries with hiking, rock climbing, mountain biking and stand-up paddleboarding excursions. Coinciding with the reopening of The Broadmoor Manitou and Pikes Peak Cog Railway, new fitness options include hiking to the top of Pikes Peak and taking the train down, or taking the train to the top of Pikes Peak and biking down the twisting Pikes Peak Highway.

The resort’s renown spa offers traditional treatments such as deep tissue massages and facials as well as more inventive options. The Wine Down package ($445) incorporates grape seed extract and comes with a chardonnay sugar scrub, massage, manicure and pedicure.

The Broadmoor, 1 Lake Ave., Colorado Springs, 800-755-5011, broadmoor.com

1639052821 309 5 Colorado spas that offer everything from soaks in beer

Hyoung Chang, The Denver Post

The therapy room of The Beer Spa in Denver. Customers soak in a cedar hydrotherapy tub filled with a meticulously crafted blend of hops, barley, and herbs.

The Beer Spa in Denver

After becoming intrigued by a beer spa in Poland, husband-and-wife duo Damien Zouaoui and Jessica French decided to open a similar concept in the United States. They zeroed in on Denver because of the city’s robust craft beer scene and Colorado’s health-consciousness creds.

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“Moulin Rouge! The Musical,” “To Kill a Mockingbird” on sale Friday; “Hamilton” tickets still available

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“Moulin Rouge! The Musical,” “To Kill a Mockingbird” on sale Friday; “Hamilton” tickets still available

Long-delayed and firmly on the 2022 calendar, tickets for touring Broadway productions such as Aaron Sorkin’s Tony-winning “Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird,” as well as “Moulin Rouge! The Musical,” “Hadestown,” “Mean Girls,” “Pretty Woman” and more, are finally on sale this week.

The shows, taking place at the Buell Theatre in the Denver Performing Arts Complex, are part of a Broadway touring slate that goes public at 10 a.m. on Friday, Dec. 10, via denvercenter.org. Most tickets start at $35 and run up to $145. All tickets will be distributed electronically.

In the case of high-demand shows that are currently on sale, such as “Hamilton” (Feb. 16-March 27, 2022) tickets are still available and currently priced from $59 to $500. Most dates that The Denver Post surveyed this week appeared to have at least one seat still available, if not a dozen-plus. Most are in the “premium Golden Circle” category, meaning $500 per pop.

Most of the other shows going on sale Friday had been rescheduled multiple times due to venue closures and COVID-19 mandates last year, and some of the new dates run into 2023. Even with coronavirus variants still active, Denver’s own rising vaccination rates and strict protocols at indoor cultural venues — vaccination or negative COVID-test proof, as well as enforced masks — have helped coax touring Broadway shows out of their long hibernation.

Local Broadway producer Denver Center for the Performing Arts in October also instituted its own strict protocols.

“This holiday season is vastly different from this time last year at the DCPA,” said Lisa Mallory, DCPA’s vice president of marketing and sales, in a press statement. “We truly appreciate the community as we all continue to do our part to safely return to the things we love and hope you will consider giving the gift of theatre this holiday season.”

As with most cultural nonprofits, DCPA could sorely use the revenue in a season that’s typically their most profitable. But despite layoffs, furloughs, cancellations and postponements, DCPA has been able to bring back most of its pre-pandemic staff, leaders have said, and successfully re-launched its Broadway season last week with the return of “The Lion King.”

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