Shepard Fairey’s ‘We The People’ Is A Campaign That Exemplifies What Art & Creativity Can Do

Shepard Fairey — best known for creating the Hope poster using an image of Mr. Obama — has now worked with photographers to exclusively create We The People, a campaign that features 5 pieces of art in which 3 are of his own creation.

Shepard Fairey 'Obama Hope' (Sold Out!) election campaign 2008 | BL | Black Lion Journal | Black Lion
Shepard Fairey ‘Obama Hope’ (Sold Out!)

Shepard Fairey is no stranger to the art world. After gaining a B.A. at Rhode Island School of Design in 1992 and moving to Los Angeles, CA, he gained numerous art awards and even an honorary doctorate from Pratt Institute in 2015. He’s had his work in exhibitions since 1993 with solo exhibitions since 1998; and has collections all over the country, including London, UK. | Shepard’s Instagram | Website

The We The People campaign’s purpose is to reject hate, fear, and racism that was and still is, in many instances, part of the president elect’s 2016 campaign. Their Kickstarter project sought funds for 8 days and ended on January 18 after raising $1,365,005 with a goal of $60,000. Clearly after overpassing their initial goal, the artists and photographers, being Shepard Fairy, Ernesto Yerena, and Jessica Sabogal, Delphine Diallo, Ridwan Adhami, Arlene Mejorado, and Ayse Gürsöz, commissioned by the Amplifier Foundation, plan to use the 2017 inauguration day as a time and place to exude solidarity. Strong restrictions on signs and banners for inauguration day meant that the art wouldn’t be able to be featured in a traditional way. The artists worked around that by “hacking” the visual limitations and distribution methods via the original traditional way — the newspaper.

“Much of Washington will be locked down on Inauguration Day, and in some areas there will be severe restrictions on signs and banners. But we’ve figured out a hack. It’s called the newspaper! On January 20th, if this campaign succeeds, we’re going to take out full-page ads in the Washington Post with these images, so that people across the capitol and across the country will be able to carry them into the streets, hang them in windows, or paste them on walls. Every dollar you put into this campaign will buy six ads printed and distributed for us.”
— Amplifier Foundation

Yet, inauguration day isn’t the only time and place that these artists plan or encourage the use of their work. If you’re attending the Women’s March that’s being held throughout the country in various cities, then you’re encouraged to hold these images with pride because, ultimately, they’re intended as new symbols of hope and solidarity. If by chance you’re unable to attend the Women’s March, then grab yourself the image anyway — of which is made available as a FREE download, courtesy of the message behind the Amplifier Foundation’s intent: solidarity.

 

Shepard Fairey's 'We The People' Is A Campaign That Exemplifies What Art & Creativity Can Do | BL | Black Lion Journal | Black Lion
Defend Dignity | Artist: Shepard Fairey | Photographer: Arlene Mejorado

 

Shepard Fairey's 'We The People' Is A Campaign That Exemplifies What Art & Creativity Can Do | BL | Black Lion Journal | Black Lion
Protect Each Other | Artist: Shepard Fairey | Photographer: Delphine Diallo

 

greater-than-fear-artist-shepard-fairey-photographer-ridwan-adhami
Greater Than Fear | Artist: Shepard Fairey | Photographer: Ridwan Adhami

 

Shepard Fairey's 'We The People' Is A Campaign That Exemplifies What Art & Creativity Can Do | BL | Black Lion Journal | Black Lion
Indivisible | Artist: Jessica Sabogal

 

Shepard Fairey's 'We The People' Is A Campaign That Exemplifies What Art & Creativity Can Do | BL | Black Lion Journal | Black Lion
Resilient | Artist: Ernesto Yerena | Photographer: Ayse Gürsöz

 

BL | Black Lion Journal | Black Lion | Christina Lydia

Artwork and Photography by Shepard Fairy, Ernesto Yerena, and Jessica Sabogal, Delphine Diallo, Ridwan Adhami, Arlene Mejorado, and Ayse Gürsöz, commissioned by the Amplifier Foundation. © 2017 Black Lion Journal. Want to see your work here? Visit the Submissions page to learn more about submitting to the Journal’s sections or to The Wire’s Dream.


 

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