The Saving Banksy Toronto Exhibit, featuring the Haight Street Rat, along with inspiring works from local street art talent, and Los Angeles’ graffiti icon RISK, will be open to the public from June 6th to 11th, at Yorkville Village Lane.

When I heard that Banksy’s Haight Street Rat would be making an appearance here in Toronto, one of the most controversial and sought-after contemporary art pieces in the world, I may have got a little overly excited.

I haven’t even seen Saving Banksy on Netflix yet to get the full story, but…

I love graffiti. I would tour the world for graffiti art alone. One of my dreams, for years, was owning a standalone bookshop/publishing house, that would be covered in street art, brick by brick.

So hearing that there will be a free-to-the-public art exhibit, featuring not only world-renowned graffiti art, but also local talent. Well, I jumped at the chance to be at the opening party to be one of the first to see.

Here’s what the legendary, anonymous street-artist, political activist and film director, Banksy has to say about his work.

On Painting Rats, and the Glorification of Them. They exist without permission. They are hated, hunted and persecuted. They live in quiet desperation amongst the filth. And yet they are capable of bringing entire civilizations to their knees. If you are dirty, insignificant, and unloved then rats are the ultimate role model. ~ Banksy, Wall and Piece.

Toronto’s Street Art scene is pretty epic. Take a walk through graffiti alley near Queen and Spadina some time.

While you’re in Yorkville this week though, check out the inspiring works of local street artists kevkav, Alexander Bacon, Hello Kirsten, Anthony Ricciardi, and Dani Cooperman.

Yorkville Village Banksy Exhibition Toronto

Here are a couple of pieces to admire at the exhibit. If I shared all of my favourites, it would virtually be the exhibit.

kevkav local Toronto Graffiti Artist CN Tower
Art pieces by local street artist kevkav. Visit the Saving Banksy Toronto Exhibit to learn how to win the CN Tower in turquoise.
Graffiti Icon RISK art featured at Yorkville Village Banksy Exhibition Toronto
Iconic graffiti artist, RISK. “With a career spanning 30 years, RISK has solidified his place in the history books as a world-renowned graffiti legend.”


StreetARToronto (StART) is a suite of innovative programs specifically designed for streets and public spaces. StART programs encourage active transportation such as walking and cycling and create opportunities for positive engagement among residents, business, artists, arts organizations and City staff. Replacing vandalism with vibrant, colourful artwork makes our streets safer as well as more beautiful and showcases local artists, mentors emerging creative talent and reduces overall infrastructure maintenance costs. While based on themes relevant to local neighbourhoods, StART artworks and artists also reflect the City of Toronto’s motto: Diversity our Strength and foster a greater sense of belonging among all. StART is an initiative of the City of Toronto, Transportation Services Division, Public Realm Section.

Learn more on Twitter, or Facebook.