The absolute Godfather of Street Art, Blek Le Rat
Born and raised in paris france, "Blek Le Rat" rose to fame as the first street artist in paris and the originator of the life size stencil. He is often accredited as the first street artist to limit his art to the stencil medium and has influenced most modern stencil artists including Banksy.
In fact Banksy once stated "every time i think iv'e done something slightly original i find out Blek Le Rat has done it twenty years prior and twice as well". Blek Le Rat started of doing small rats creeping along the walls of paris and slowly moved to bigger stencils until he invented the life size stencil. In '91 Blek was caught by authorizes while putting up a stencil near a museum in paris, and since then he only works with posters to decrease the application time and the punishment if caught. Blek has always had a distaste for galleries and prefers to work on the streets, stating that the main motive behind an artist is to be seen, not sold.