Anonymous street artist Banksy’s Haight Street Rat will be on display in the Jax Makerspace Gallery at the Jacksonville Main Library from Feb. 14 – April 14.
The estimated $2 million piece of street art was removed from the side of a San Francisco bed and breakfast by passionate art collector and street art curator, Brian Greif in 2010. Greif invested his own money to have the work removed from the building and conserved to be shown to the public for free in venues across the country. He served as the executive producer on the 2017 film Saving Banksy, which told the story of the Rat.
Banksy — whose identity remains a mystery — is a famous street artist who travels the globe creating unique spray painted stencil pieces. The Haight Street Rat measures 7 feet by 7 1/2 feet and was created using red and black spray paint on 107-year-old redwood cedar.
In celebration of the piece, the Jax Makerspace Gallery will also host an exhibit — Writing on the Walls—that features work by local street artists.
The library is collaborating with the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville and others to provide educational programming and recommended reading lists relevant to the topic of street art.
“The Cultural Council couldn’t be more excited to partner with our amazing library to show what is arguably one of Banksy’s most famous pieces,” said Cultural Council Executive Director Tony Allegretti. “With so much uplifting public and street art popping up in our community, Mr. Greif’s story of drawing the line comes at the perfect time.”
The Haight Street Rat will be available for viewing at the opening reception of the Jax Makerspace Gallery’s exhibit Writing on the Walls starting at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 14, and during all open hours of the Main Library until April 14.