Mix'd Bag

Shepard Fairey | Art & Walls

17 Comments 06 | September | 2010

I’m not much of an artist and not much of an art aficionado either.  But when I received a call a while ago to come check out Shepard Fairey mid-mural, I knew I would regret skipping out.  Prior to showing up I was only aware that he was the mastermind behind Obama’s “Hope” poster, but considering how ubiquitous that image was during the elections I figured it would be time well spent.

I arrived on the scene and was greeted by the following sight.

ShepFaireyMural

Photos | by Me
(Please don’t clown my fake-ass Photoshop skills.  Props to Powerpoint!)

It was only then that I recalled first seeing his Obey Giant poster years ago, plastered to a utility box, starring back at me from across the intersection at UCSD.  Suddenly all of the “Obey” apparel made sense.  *Durrr*  Had my limited knowledge of his body of work been exposed to the posse of artistes who gather to pay reverence to a modern art god, I would have been sneered into a cave more remote that Osama’s.

One by one, the “real” fans approached Shepard and collected a smile, a handshake, an autograph, or all three.  Although I felt a bit out of place, I mustered up the courage to ask for the first two and I’m happy I did.  As recognized as his art is, maybe I was just hoping for some creative juices to rub off.  At the very least I got a palm full of wheatpaste and a courtesy nod from the great white hope.

I had not thought much about it since, but then I discovered that a local “artist” had decided to “contribute” to the work.  Behold, revolutionary art revolutionized

shep_graf_1_t614

The creative stroke of genius (emphasis on stroke) behind this tag, “Polo Joe,” is obviously psyched to have his “art” associated with Shepard Fairey’s, and judging by the wayward penmanship I would also accuse him of peeing on any number of toilet seats.

What a waste, right?  Hours of diligent, concerted work, ruined in minutes, by some less-than-average-Joe.  It’s unlikely that Shep (I call him that because we’re totally bros now) will return to undo the damage so I can only cross my fingers that Joe gets caught blue handed and his Krylon cans are shuvved waaay far up his butt.  Let’s Hope.

Thoughts on Shepard?  Thoughts on tagging?  Please comment!
For an interview with Shepard Fairey prior to the defacing click here.

  • Great rec, man! See my response to Cindy!

  • Finally got around to seeing this flick! It does well to provide some history on street art and some of its key players. A great story that was originally supposed to be told the other way around. Watch and you’ll know what I’m talking about. Best quote, “I think the joke is on… I don't know who the joke's on – really. I don't even know if there is a joke.”

  • Great rec, man! See my response to Cindy!

  • Finally got around to seeing this flick! It does well to provide some history on street art and some of its key players. A great story that was originally supposed to be told the other way around. Watch and you’ll know what I’m talking about. Best quote, “I think the joke is on… I don't know who the joke's on – really. I don't even know if there is a joke.”

  • Fabsmueri

    Exit Through the Gift Shop was a great rec…thanks all!

  • Skantini

    just watched “Exit Through the Gift Shop” 2 nights ago and its AMAZING.

  • Awwwwwe shit, yo!! Raaaaaammmmooo!! Any and all Beat Street references are welcome. In case the rest of you forgot just how rad this movie was/is, check out the list of cameos (look for the people playing “themselves”… http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/B… )

  • chrisrae

    spitzspitzspitzspitzspitzspitzspitzspitzspitzspitzspitzspitzspitzspitzspitzspitzspitzspitzspitzspitzspitz's shitty grandson.

  • Long | Distance | Drunk

    Polo Joe + Michael Bolton = No Talent Ass Clown Circus

  • Long | Distance | Drunk

    Hah! Indeed, the Swiss youth have a lot to learn about tagging…both style and content. “Rap Rap Rap”

  • Consider it added to my “Netflix queue”….(i.e. I will look for it at the library).

  • Hah! Indeed, the Swiss youth have a lot to learn about tagging…both style and content. “Rap Rap Rap”

  • Polo Joe + Michael Bolton = No Talent Ass Clown Circus

  • Fabsmueri

    It reminds me of the art you see in Europe when you are walking through a tunnel. Wu-Tang forever *@! The System…RA RA and so on.

  • JayPee

    I am a big fan of Shepard Fairey. Hey went to school at Rhode Island School of Design while I was in high school in Connecticut, which was when I began seeing his original Andre the Giant Has a Posse stickers showing up in record stores and on stop signs. I've been a fan ever since.

    Polo Joe is a no talent assclown, and if there was any justice in this world the people of San Diego would hunt him down and pant a new mural with his entrails.

  • Mike

    Great movie. And Polo Joe's a dick.

    He also has a mural somewhere in South Park I think.

  • Ryekr

    You should check out “Exit Through the Gift Shop”. Fairey has a supporting role and it's a really cool movie besides that!

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