Shepard Fairey is an American artist who gained national prominence in 2008 with his famous “HOPE” poster of Barack Obama, which played an important role in the Presidential campaign.

Born in 1970, Fairey graduated from the prestigious Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) in 1992 with a B.F.A. in Illustration. While attending RISD, Fairey worked in a local skateboarding shop, where he stenciled punk T-shirts. There, Fairey nurtured a sense of rebelliousness and subversion of authority in his work.

Indeed, Fairey achieved his first taste of publicity when he was arrested for a practice called wheat pasting, in which an artist displays his work on public property using an adhesive mixture of water and wheat. Aside from these arrests, Fairey is no stranger to legal trouble. In 2009, the Associated Press sued him for basing his “HOPE” poster on one of their photos of Obama. Fairey argued fair use.

Fairey’s main ongoing project today is “Obey,” which he describes as a “counter-culture Big Brother.” Designed in the early 1990s, the Obey icon features a face based on that of Andre the Giant, a professional wrestler, often with the word “OBEY” accompanying it. According to Fairey, “The OBEY sticker attempts to stimulate curiosity and bring people to question both the sticker and their relationship with their surroundings.”

Fairey has also designed several album covers for prominent musicians, including the Smashing Pumpkins (“Zeitgeist”), Flogging Molly (“Whiskey on a Sunday”), Led Zeppelin (“Mothership”), and the Black Eyed Peas (“Monkey Business”). Additionally, he was featured in the documentary film “Beautiful Losers,” which profiled a group of young artists (including Fairey) in New York City in the 1990s.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Metropolitan Museum of Art: Timeline of Art History

Metropolitan Museum of Art: Timeline of Art History

Travel around the world through art with this museums collection of over 6,000 works of art, from Egypt to North A… [read review or visit site]

London Transport Museum Posters

London Transport Museum Posters

A must-see collection of 5,000 vivid, colorful British posters from the early 1900s onward. Browse by artist (over … [read review or visit site]

Fillmore and Avalon Collection

Fillmore and Avalon Collection

Wish you'd visited San Francisco in the late 1960s? Get a quick hit with this comprehensive collection of psychedel… [read review or visit site]

USSR Posters

USSR Posters

Ben Perry's Flickr photoset showcasing almost 1500 Soviet propaganda, advertising, theatre and movie posters from 1… [read review or visit site]

New York Public Library

New York Public Library

The New York Public Library's impressive Digital Gallery offers free access to over 500,000 historical images inclu… [read review or visit site]

The American Memory Project

The American Memory Project

This amazing Library of Congress site includes about a hundred photo and document collections (see complete list) o… [read review or visit site]



Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Shepard Fairey Obey Giant Neil Young 2010 Canvas Print Screenprint PosterShepard Fairey Obey Giant Israel Palestine Signed Art Print 2009 Silkscreen MintShepard Fairey Money Set Nixon/ Lenin/ Mao Fine Art Print Set Signed Numbered Shepard Fairey Power Bidder Obey Banksy Street Art Poster Print Faile ObamaShepard Fairey Obey Giant Ozzy Osbourne Screen Print 2001 Edition Of 200 Signed Dave Kinsey Blk Mrkt Screen Print From 1999 Rare Edition Of 250 Shepard Fairey Print And Destroy Letterpress Shepard Fairey 2015 Obey Poster Print Shepard Fairey Kiss Me Deadly Signed Numbered PrintShepard Fairey Lotus Flower Signed & Numbered Art Print Edition Of 300Tyrant Boot - Shepard Fairey - Obey Giant - 2008 S/n RareShepard Fairey - Rare 1997 Limited Print Edition Of 100, #36 - "obey 50s Guy"Shepard Fairey Obey Giant Ian Mackaye Art Print Minor Threat Fugazi Signed PunkObey Giant Shepard Fairey Coup D'etat PrintShepard Fairey Obey Montana Mtn Limited Spray Paint CansShepard Fairey 2nd Amendment Solutions Poster Print Mint Signed Numbered ObeyShepard Fairey Obey Giant Presidential Seal Matching Number SetShepard Fairey Peace Freedom Dove S/n Print Silkscreen Poster Obey GiantBlack Panthers Heuy Newton Shepard Fairey Silkscreen On CanvasShepard Fairey Obey Giant Face 2 Signed Rare ArtBlack Panthers Heuy Newton Shepard Fairey Silkscreen On CanvasShepard Fairey : Joan Jett Obey ~ I Love Rock N Roll ~ ****free Ups Shipping****Signed Shepard Fairey Tee Shirt From The Contemporary Museum Honolulu 2005Artists For Freedom Print Poster By Shepard Fairey Obey Moca Sold Out SignedShepard Fairey Obey Giant Face 1 Signed Rare ArtObey Giant Dance Right Print Signed And Numbered Plus Extras Shepard FaireyShepard Fairey Autograph Signed Sticker Tag Obey Artist Street Art MovementObey Shepard Fairey Art Street Savage Andre Shield Raglan Tee T Shirt Sz Mens MShepard Fairey - Americana - Lyrics - Rare - Low Number 10/200 - Obey GiantNew Obey Giant Sticker Pack Skateboard Shepard Fairey Set 30 Pcs BanksyShepard Fairey - Red Andre Official Obey Sticker Not Banksy Invader Kaws