Three days later, another grabby fairgoer went further still: On Saturday afternoon, performance artist David Datuna removed Comedian from the wall, peeled the banana, and ate it. He called the performance Hungry Artist. By then, the work had appeared on the cover of the New York Post, sparked the trending hashtag #cattelan—where people posted images of various objects taped to walls—and completely sold out. Perrotin sold the three editions of the work for prices between $120,000 and $150,000, and both artist’s proofs had been acquired by museums.
Perrotin explained that even though his gallery doesn’t typically disclose prices publicly, in the case of Cattelan’s banana, doing so was crucial to the work’s success. “You’re buying a story,” he explained. “From the moment you buy it, you’re part of the story.”