The original buyer for the painting that street-artist Banksy bought from a Housing Works thrift store during his New York City residency for $50, then donated back after embellishing it with the image of a Nazi soldier, has bailed. The Banality of the Banality of Evil, had sold in an online auction for $615,000 on Halloween. Unfortunately for Housing Works, which uses its donations to fight homelessness and AIDS, the top bidder never paid.
After winning the Oct. 31 auction, the purchaser who went by “gorpetri” in the online auction site reportedly canceled, though the organization didn’t give Talking Points Memo a reason why. After gorpetri’s default, the organization began searching for another buyer among the top bidders, many of whom were reluctant.
Two of the highest bidders spoke to the New York Times and Talking Points Memo about the incident, although neither ended up purchasing the piece despite having previously offered as much as $400,000. The painting was sold to a bidder last Wednesday who wished to remain anonymous. The final selling price was not disclosed.