In 2010, the Egyptian Theatre was "tagged" with this original piece of Banksy street art during the Sundance Film Festival. The now-named, Dirty Rat, was painted on their back, stage door. To avoid vandalism, they removed the door very shortly thereafter, and have mantained it as a "treasure" of the theatre.
However, they currently find themselves in need of raising vast sums of money to secure new housing for their ever-expanding and succesful YouTheatre program.
This has prompted the Save Our Banksy campaign.
Last year, the venue which housed our YouTheatre classrooms and rehearsal space, the Main Street Mall, was purchased and is currently being converted to high-end condominiums. The Egyptian Theatre are trying to re-secure space therein, or in another suitable location, but this has put them in dire need of funding, which we have not yet sourced.
The logical resource was to sell the Banksy.
As a Arts organization, existing to foster creativity and artistic thought within their students, patrons and community, the Egyptian Theatre felt conflicted in selling the art of one to benefit another, especially as Banksy's artwork is clearly intended to remain "in situ", on the street, visible to all passersby. Removing the door from public view to sell to a private collector, they feel, would make them violators of the artist's intention and devalue the gift he gave the theatre and our community.
Because of Banksy’s rise in popularity with collectors, wall-art has been chipped out and sold at galleries worldwide. They know if we proceeded with a private sale they could expect to raise much-needed funds to help secure a location for their YouTheatre program.
So they reach out to You today, Banksy fans and art enthusiasts worldwide, to help raise money to offset their need to sell this piece.