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Obama Artist Busted For Graffiti – Again

We didn’t want to give this gentleman any more publicity, but since so many have sent this story in and posted, we guess we have to post it.

As originally reported yesterday by his fans at the Boston Globe:

Street artist arrested on way to event at ICA

By Milton J. Valencia and Mark Shanahan
Globe Staff / February 7, 2009

Shepard Fairey, the controversial street artist riding a roller coaster of publicity with his red, white, and blue posters of President Obama, was arrested last night on his way to deejay an event kicking off his exhibition at the Institute of Contemporary Art.

Fairey, 38, who is known for his countercultural style, was arrested on two outstanding warrants and was being held, according to a police official with knowledge of the arrest who requested anonymity. Police could not describe the nature of the warrants, but said they originated in Massachusetts.

Fairey has been arrested at least 14 times, he has told the Globe.

The artist was arrested at about 9:15 p.m. as he was about to enter a sold-out dance event at the ICA on Northern Avenue, known as "Experiment Night." The event is geared toward a younger crowd, with techno-style music, and more than 750 people were waiting for Fairey, some of whom had bought tickets on Craigslist for as much as $500.

Fairey was supposed to appear as a guest disc jockey for the kickoff of his exhibit, "Supply and Demand," which will run through Aug. 16. He was scheduled to go on stage at about 10:30 p.m., and an hour later organizers told the crowd that he was arrested…

Fairey, a street artist, graphic designer, and political activist from South Carolina, is best known for his "Obey Giant" campaign of stickers, stencils, and posters in the early 1990s.

Most recently, he has created a buzz with the red, white, and blue posters of Obama, emblazoned with the words "Hope," "Progress," and "Change."

Obama supporters began downloading the image and distributing it at campaign events , and one of the displays in Fairey’s exhibit includes a typed letter from Obama that says, "I am privileged to be a part of your art work and proud to have your support."

Fairey was recently seen with Mayor Thomas M. Menino at an event to promote his show, and banners raised at City Hall announce the exhibit.

At the same time, anti-graffiti activists complained because a street artist was going to be the subject of a museum show..

Mr. Fairey is also being pursued by the Associated Press for using one of their photos of Mr. Obama for his famous “Hope” poster:

Of course Mr. Fairey’s real crimes against humanity go far deeper than these indiscretions.

For he is a worshipper of and propagandist for slavers, dictators and tyrants everywhere:

     

    

Funny how he was so attracted to Mr. Obama.

Hilariously, the USA Network has been promoting this miscreant – for his sterling character.

You can see the video here.

(Thanks to all who sent this in, and to Caligirl9 and BillK for posting it in “Selected News.” And thanks to Curvyred for the USA Today clip.)

This article was posted by Steve on Sunday, February 8th, 2009. Comments are currently closed.

12 Responses to “Obama Artist Busted For Graffiti – Again”

  1. caligirl9 says:

    Artist of famed Obama poster arrested in Boston

    A street artist famous for his red, white and blue “Hope” posters of President Obama has been arrested on warrants accusing him of tagging property with graffiti, police said Saturday…

    Two warrants were issued for [Shepard] Fairey on Jan. 24 after police determined he’d tagged property in two locations with graffiti based on the Andre the Giant street art campaign from his early career, police Officer James Kenneally said Saturday…

    The image is the subject of a copyright dispute with The Associated Press. Fairey argues his use of the AP photo is protected by “fair use,” which allows exceptions to copyright laws based on, among other factors, how much of the original is used, what the new work is used for and how the original is affected by the new work….

    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2009/02/07/national/a074934S62.DTL

    So not only is Fairey a “street artist,” but also a vandal and a thief. (Go Associated Press; I could have created that poster with Photoshop!)

    I predict Fairey will get some sort of award from TCO for being brave and standing up against ‘da man.

  2. BillK says:

    A fun story from the AP:

    Creator of Famed Obama Poster Arrested on Graffiti Charges

    BOSTON — A street artist famous for his red, white and blue “Hope” posters of President Obama has been arrested on warrants accusing him of tagging property with graffiti, police said Saturday.

    Shepard Fairey was arrested Friday night on his way to the Institute of Contemporary Art for a kickoff event for his first solo exhibition, called “Supply and Demand.”

    Two warrants were issued for Fairey on Jan. 24 after police determined he’d tagged property in two locations with graffiti based on the Andre the Giant street art campaign from his early career, Officer James Kenneally said. One of the locations was the railroad trestle by the landmark Boston University bridge over the Charles River, police said.

    Fairey, 38, of Los Angeles, is scheduled to be arraigned Monday in Brighton District Court, said Jake Wark, a spokesman for the Suffolk District Attorney. Wark said Fairey would also be arraigned on a default warrant related to a separate graffiti case in the Roxbury section of Boston.

    Fairey has spent the last two weeks in the Boston area installing the ICA exhibit and creating outdoor art, including a 20-by-50 foot banner on the side of City Hall, according to a statement issued Saturday by the museum.

    The museum said Fairey was released a few hours after his arrest. Boston police confirmed Fairey had been released, but did not know exactly when or the amount of his bail.

    A man who answered the phone at Fairey’s Los Angeles studio, Studio One, declined comment.

    Shepard Fairey was completely unaware that there were any warrants for his arrest. Had he known, he would have resolved all such issues before the opening of his art exhibit at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston,” his attorney, Jeffrey Wiesner, said in an e-mail.

    Fairey has been arrested numerous times for drawing on buildings and other private property without permission.

    His Obama image has been sold on hundreds of thousands of stickers and posters, and was unveiled at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington before Obama’s inauguration.

    The image is the subject of a copyright dispute with The Associated Press. Fairey argues his use of the AP photo is protected by “fair use,” which allows exceptions to copyright laws based on, among other factors, how much of the original is used, what the new work is used for and how the original is affected by the new work.

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,489604,00.html

    What a surprise – he doesn’t respect copyrights, so why should he respect the concept of private property?

  3. curvyred says:

    Currently the USA network is running a series of commercials featuring “characters”, the commericals present that ‘character counts’ and feature such dignataries as dun dun duhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh: SHEPARD FAIREY (I kid you not!)

    One of the “winners” of USA’S Characters Approved Awards:

    http://video.usanetwork.com/player/?id=65486#videoid=967861

    Notice behind Sheppard (in the video) is another poster with a rather ominous ‘OBEY” message.

    If he passes the muster for being a character that counts – ay yai yai – I would really hate to see the ones who didn’t.

    Also a lot of irony in Mr. Sheppard talking about “propaganda”, he really should know. He also “justifies” damaging other people’s property all in the name of his “artistry”

  4. sheehanjihad says:

    I would really hate to see the ones who didn’t.

    We wont pass. Those of us who want our nation back are already being labeled subversives and partisans. This is the actual beginning of the conflict. Take heed, and be very careful. The progroms are not far off, and we will soon be the “enemy of the state”. I am glad I lived long enough to die for my country.

  5. greasywrench says:

    Artist my ass! He’s using a color tube or plug-in to create these posters. I can do the same thing with Jasc Paintshop Pro 9. As far as his subject matter, it just reinforces what most intelligent people know about the far-left in this country – they have learned nothing from the mistakes of the past.

    • Steve says:

      “Artist my ass! He’s using a color tube or plug-in to create these posters. I can do the same thing with Jasc Paintshop Pro 9.”

      Yes, I thought pretty much the first time I saw Mr. Fairey’s “art.”

      Any imaging program could produce what he does with a bare minimum of effort.

      There doesn’t seem to be a lot of artistry involved.

      But of course cans of spray paint are his preferred instruments.

  6. 1republicanscientist says:

    This guy is a chode. Why do these liberal cheddar heads want this so bad? How many of stalin’s own citizens were killed at his ideological hands? Millions? What’s so good about that? So we can all run around wearing earth tones and horn-rimmed glasses? Bush wanted to spread democracy and they call him a murderer, these pimples worship past dictators that are responsible for 50+ million innocent deaths all because they think a damned poster looks cool. Not in my back yard.

  7. beautyofreason says:

    LOL – Why do liberals consider it “art” to copy campaign posters? One wonders if they would also consider it to be “art” if someone copied pages verbatim from the communist manifesto or Mao’s Red Book. Do they have no independent thought aside from what their politicians say? Did they use up all of that “originality” dunking crucifixes in urine and hanging shark remains in formaldehyde vats?

    I’ve seen many art exhibitions by liberal minded people who proclaim to value aesthetic experimentation and new ideas, but their work amounts to little more than political propaganda or nihilistic shock value.

  8. Freedom615 says:

    Please allow me to vent. As a graphic designer and illustrator with 25 years in the business, guys like this really get me steamed. Let me echo SG’s assertion that the “creation” of the poster would not take much more than a few filters and some Photoshop knowledge.

    The second thing that drives me nuts is that folks assume because of who I am and what I do for a living that my politics are extremely to the left. Many of my friends in the industry are Obamabots and I’ve pretty much given up trying to talk facts with them. I just tell them “wait and see.”

    I’ve never understood how or why artists and other creatives who thrive and depend upon freedom of expression could be okay with cozying up to the very people that could (and historically have) silenced them!

  9. Gila Monster says:

    Hm-mm, …. The Obamessiah, Stalin, Lenin. Mao and two Ho’s.
    So where’s the obligatory Che poster?

    • gipper says:

      Che is on backorder. Call the office of the Comrade Related Art Posters (CRAP). Your order will be filled in as soon as 15 months!

  10. Professor_Repulso says:

    Say, who is that on the poster at the lower right hand side? Angela Davis or Michelle Obama?


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