Banksy's "Out of Bed Rat" mural was painted on a wall in Los Angeles back in 2002. At some point, the section of stucco wall was removed and listed at auction for $400,000. The buyer and hammer price are unknown, but the piece is on its way to Italy, making a pitstop in Brooklyn so that Serett Metal Works can save it from disintegrating.

Stucco is not a very durable material when moved, and obviously Banksy wasn't concerned about that when he created it over a decade ago. Serett Metal Works owner Josh Young and his team spent three weeks removing rotten plywood, nails, and drywall from the piece so that they could fix and fortify areas at risk of complete crumbling. With no prior experience or "experts" to consult, the process was labor-intensive and tricky, but they pulled it off without destroying the expensive artwork. 

We're glad that they were able to preserve it, but we're still a little upset with the fact that it was stolen, sold, and will be leaving the country instead of deteriorating naturally back in L.A.

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[via DNAinfo]