“I’m always creating new patterns to use in my street installs and fine art pieces. I used to buy discontinued wallpaper to incorporate patterns into my art, but now I design and print my own.” – Shepard Fairey
American graphic artist and social activist Shepard Fairey is one of the most influential figures in the Street Art movement, alongside artists such as Banksy, Invader and JR. Blurring the boundaries between commercial and fine art, Fairey uses prints, stickers, stencils, collages, posters and murals to create his inflammatory and politically charged work. For over 30 years, he has explored a myriad of themes including propaganda, political corruption, injustice and climate change, to name a few. Emerging from the skateboarding and punk scene, Shepard Fairey rose to prominence in the early 1990s through the dispersion stickers in public spaces all over America, carrying the slogan “OBEY”, featuring the face of the wrestler Andre the Giant. Supporting Barack Obama’s first candidacy for President of the United States in 2008, the artist created a series of iconic posters. They portrayed then-presidential candidate Obama in red, white and blue, accompanied by the words “hope”, “change” or “progress”. Shepard Fairey draws influence for his work from the art world (Pop Art, Russian Constructivists, Cuban poster artists) and music (Sex Pistols, Joe Strummer of The Clash, Chuck D of Public Enemy). He has exhibited at renowned museums around the world. Most notably a retrospective at the ICA Boston and The Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh in 2009. Fairey’s multifaceted artworks are included in the public collections of MoMA in New York, the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C. and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. Born in 1970 in Charleston, South Carolina, Shepard Fairey currently lives in Los Angeles.