Banksy street art piece coming to Winter Haven

By Rick Elmhorst, Anchor/Reporter
Last Updated: Wednesday, January 17, 2018, 6:24 PM EST

A famous piece of street art created by the world’s most famous street artist will be on display starting Jan. 27 in Winter Haven.

  • Spray-painted piece saved from San Francisco building
  • Documentary film "Saving Banksy" made about effort
  • Piece will be on display at Outer Space Gallery

"Haight Street Rat" by renowned underground artist Banksy recently survived destruction, as the San Francisco building that was its home was set for demolition. A documentary movie called “Saving Bansky” showcased the effort to save the Rat from an untimely demise.

The identity of Banksy is a mystery. Some people think he is from London, but no one seems to know for sure. His artwork just shows up unannounced on buildings around the world.

Banksy fan Chris Sexson helped to arrange for "Haight Street Rat" to be displayed at the Outer Space Gallery. He said lots of people may not have heard of the street artist.

“Right, you do get a little of that,” Sexton said. “If you are not exposed to street art in major metropolitan areas and all over the world, this may have slipped by you.”

The Banksy piece will be part of a street art celebration. The “Saving Banksy” movie will be shown that day, too.

“We are looking for things that are a little edgy, things that capture people’s attention," Jane Waters of Art Ensemble said. "Banksy definitely captures attention.”

Added Sexson: “Winter Haven’s got a lot going on, and this is just one more little thing that I think makes our town cool and interesting."

To find out more about the ongoing effort to "Save the Rat" and keep displaying "Haight Street Rat" in public spaces, visit savethebanksy.com.