A collector visiting a contemporary art fair accidentally toppled over a small glass sculpture by renowned artist Jeff Koons, shattering it to pieces.

The shiny blue sculpture, one of Koons' famous "balloon dog" series, was valued at $42,000 (approximately Rs 35 lakh).

The mishap occurred during a VIP preview at Art Wynwood in Miami, and some collectors thought it was performance art or a staged stunt.

"The collector never intended to break the sculpture, in fact she never touched it with her hands," he said. "It was the opening cocktail, lots of people were on our booth, she gave unintentionally a little kick in the pedestal, which was enough to cause the sculpture to fall down."

The gallery shared photos of the sculpture reduced to scraps of ceramic lying on the floor. The pieces are currently waiting in a box to be evaluated by an insurance expert, according to the gallery.

Gamson told reporters he thought the woman tapped on the artwork to see if it was a real balloon.

The 2021 piece was entitled "Balloon Dog (Blue)" and valued at around $42,000, according to an email from Bel-Air Fine Art. The sculpture was made of porcelain and measured 40 x 48 x 16 cm.

Koons, who was not present, is an American painter and sculptor who draws inspiration from everyday objects, including balloon animals. His works challenge notions of what is fine art, even as they have auctioned for as high as $91 million.