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February 5, 2009


corey mason

Hola Favianna ...

I'm feelin you on all points ... yes, here's to appropriate artistic acknowledgements .. and keeping away from unnecessary ugliness (litigation$) .. ayayay.

"Shepard"isms are fascinating .. now thrust in the national limelight .. via this poster ( sensation /scandal? what media fodder ) and recently, Colbert Report.. he has been producing brooding images /dubs /spins for quite some time .. often with deep cynical, portentous, or wry tones ( Andre / HOPE) .. and now his sh-- ( big-bro-mock-oganda) seems to be flipped on its head ( nearly literally via O's retouched foto).. He seems to have been calling himself into this arena for quite sometime .. and it will be equally fascinating to see how the play of law, art, legal and artistic wit play out in the arena. What a collision ...its puzzling and energizing .. i will be observing .. and visualizing/vibzinUP highest outcomes and learning, circularly ...

Corey in El Cerrito,CA = : ) ~


When I first saw the Fairey poster of Obama, I immediately recalled the source photograph, but didn't make the leap to the recognition of the extent of Fairey's rip, chalking it up to good intentions as the photo / poster was being used in a "good cause." Sadly, I was not familiar with the body of Fairey's work. Shepherd has apparently been very busy deconstructing social movement art for the sole purpose of lining his pockets...flattening the world by flattening the intent of other artists.

Also, he is massively violating the meaning of "fair use" in borrowing / lifting / sampling the art work of creatively original artists (emphasis on "work") for his own Kapitalistic greed need.

Manifesting his inner capitalistic pig, in other words.

I certainly don't buy any argument about his ever having been a "starving artist", as his history clearly shows a massive contempt for the work or rights of others.

Too sad.

spartacous Cacao

This a copy of an email i sent to the obey web site in early December and the response from the "Re-contextual" plagiarists, sounds like the one not doing research is him, besides the very childish response.

http://www.guardian.From: "spartacous cacao
> Date: December 1, 2008 1:32:13 AM PST
> To: dan@obeygiant.com
> Cc: tina@studionumber-one.com

well it will be interesting to see what the good shepherd will do next regarding Obama or will he continue pushing state propaganda on us all?
His pick of eric holder prove its just more of the same.

> Date: December 1, 2008 2:02:07 PM PST
> To: Tina S
> Subject: Re: Next Obama Series
What are you talking about? Are you actually ignorant enough to think Obama is "more of the same"? I'm all for being critical and irreverent if it is done intelligently. Maybe YOU should be the next president and solve all the problems? Or maybe you should do some research first. Good luck.

spartacous Cacao

I'm starting to think he works for the "Chair" and the mk ultra project.

Daniel Lobo

Thanks Favianna,

This is a great note on the complexities and worth approaches to the issues. I do agree with your overall analysis and contradictions, and having seen myself in similar circumstances defending the unfair circumstance in which this artist is just an instrument of manipulation I feel the pain. Unfortunately, if AP goes ahead the Rogers vs Koons is an disappointing and reminiscent precedent, that much in the same fashion that you describe did a lot of damage to open cultural development despite diverging opinions on the work of Koons, which incidentally I find far more interesting than Fairey's, but that is another story.

I think that we are going to be pulled in a highly demagogic debate, where issues of class, ownership are going to be manipulated, in a cover up to seal up public domain, hybridization, and the constant flux of shared culture. For instance since you wrote your entry I have found in closed circles an outrage not so much for the disrespect of not recognizing the reference taken, but for doing so with a "working class" photographer. Often meaning the amount of work put into ones labor, which is far from the issue here, Fairey also makes a dedicated effort, Garcia also got paid, and he does not make a change of condition claim per se other than recognition, which albeit late, he got. And this is used to attack not so much Fairey but the notion that truthfulness and authenticity reside with that picture, whereas it really touches on far more complex issues like the ones you point out.

Anyhow, I do agree that this is not so much about him, or his Obama piece, but about us and what effect it may have if he is cut short from doing what he does through repressive means on the rest of us and the culture we aim to share.



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