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Background Information about Shepard Fairey
In 2008, Fairey gained global fame with an iconic portrait of Barack Obama used throughout the presidential election. For Donald Trump’s inauguration, Fairey voiced his criticism in the form of three portraits in a similar vein, but this time featuring the faces of diverse American women. His polarizing work moves between graffiti, illustration, and Pop Art. It contains influences from the advertising industry and references to propaganda art.
Shepard Fairey’s artistic career first began in the late 90s, when he created a silkscreen of wrestler André the Giant. The fierce face spread like wildfire throughout the skater scene in the form of a sticker, which the young artist plastered over a local election poster. This then developed into his famous OBEY Giant campaign, which grew into an international network. The original design crystallized in a wide variety of forms.
Regarding his work, the artist says: “I've had people ranging from anarchists to the president of the National Reserve Bank embrace my work and I think the more diverse the audience is, the more potential for interesting dialogue there is.”