Shepard Fairey is the artist behind OBEY GIANT, the graphics that have changed the way people see art and the urban landscape. He received his Bachelor of Fine Arts in Illustration at the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence, R.I. While at RISD, he created the “Andre the Giant has a Posse” sticker that transformed into the OBEY GIANT art campaign. This campaign is rooted in the DIY counterculture of punk rock and skateboarding, but it has also taken cues from popular culture, commercial marketing and political messaging. Fairey steeps his ideology and iconography in the self-empowerment of those who refuse to be manipulated by the machine of manufactured consent. With biting sarcasm verging on reverse psychology, he goads viewers, using the imperative “obey,” to take heed of the propagandists out to bend the world to their agendas.
His work has evolved into an acclaimed body of art, which includes the 2008 "Hope" portrait of Barack Obama, which can be found in the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery.
Fairey’s 25-year career started in 1989 with his sticker campaign. In addition to his guerrilla street art presence, the artist has executed more than 50 large-scale painted public murals around the world as of 2015. His works are in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery, the Boston Institute of Contemporary Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and many others.
Fairey recently opened a solo museum show “Your Eyes Here” with the CAC Málaga as well as a solo exhibition and public murals in Detroit, Michigan as part of his Printed Matters series. The artist created new works for mural projects in Berlin and Munich in summer 2015.