Maurizio Cattelan’s highly controversial Taped Banana that debuted at Miami art exhibition Art Basel as part of an installation dubbed Comedian has fallen into the hands of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York City. The artwork was gifted by an anonymous donor who also provided a list of instructions to display the work.
The artist billed the work—his first new piece in more than 15 years—as a sculpture and it sold three times the amount of its asking price, ranging from $120,000 to $150,000. The banana was eventually removed from the booth because of the massive attention it was getting from crowds at Basel. The donor who gifted the artwork to the museum provided with a certificate of authenticity and a list of instructions with diagrams on how it should be displayed or installed, but with a freshly replaced piece of the fruit since the shelf life of bananas is just three to four days.
“Maurizio Cattelan’s work has been important to the recent history of the Guggenheim,” the New York museum’s director, Richard Armstrong, said in a statement. “We are grateful recipients of the gift of Comedian, a further demonstration of the artist’s deft connection to the history of modern art. Beyond which, it offers little stress to our storage.”