There are a handful of artists whose work resonates with me on a very deep level. Shepard Fairey is one of those artists. I was introduced to Fairey’s work in 2000 by my friend Jeff Holmes and bought my first of several of his pieces soon after. Many know his work only by his street art; the ominous, stylized faces of Andre the Giant with the caption OBEY has been “bombed” on billboards and on vacant buildings in cities all over the world. What you can’t appreciate about Shepard’s work from billboards, or even screen prints, is the subtlety and level of detail that he puts into his work. Beyond the iconic imagery used as the focal point, the incredible collaged backgrounds of his fine art pieces are built from layer upon layer of ephemera, newspaper clippings and intricately patterned stencils, all cut by hand and designed by Fairey. For his upcoming show, Harmony & Discord, Fairey is working with Pace Prints in New York to create work that is both larger and more detailed than anything he has done before. He actually moved to New York temporarily, allowing him to work in the Pace studio to create the new pieces, which includes handmade paper, embossment and relief prints, and large metal plates with screen print. Nikki and I have met him a few times at gallery shows and on each occasion he has been generous with his time, stopping for a brief conversation with us, despite the throng of fans wanting photo ops or autographs. If you happen to live in or near New York, you should definitely go check it out. The show runs May 5, 2012-June 16,2012.
[via Pace Prints]
BOOKS: Shepard Fairey