Bidding on $50 Banksy painting tops $310,000

Bidding on $50 Banksy painting tops $310,000

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NEW YORK (AP) - Bidding on a painting that British graffiti artist Banksy bought for $50 and altered has climbed to more than $310,000.

Banksy added a Nazi soldier into the pastoral scene after he purchased the painting at a Manhattan thrift shop. He donated it back to the 23rd Street Housing Works store on Tuesday.

The store put it up for auction the same day.

The auction ends Thursday at 8 p.m.

Proceeds will benefit Housing Works' homelessness and AIDS initiatives.

As he does with all his works, the elusive artist posted the image on his website. He titled it, "The banality of the banality of evil."

On Sunday, Banksy posted an essay on his website calling the design of 1 World Trade Center, the skyscraper being built at ground zero, a "disaster."

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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