Shepard Fairey (Obey Propaganda)


Shepard Fairey's Obey Propaganda can be known as a response to how society handles advertisement. The word/term "obey" is one that holds such a strong meaning and is the focal point of what he tries to communicate through his art. People just tend to obey what the media tell them and most do not stop to analyze what they're being sold. When Fairey displays the word OBEY with his trademark Andre the Giant logo, he attempts to make the public realize how they are: obedient. Like most street artists do, Fairey attempts to send his message with multiple works displayed in multiple cities around the country. To strengthen his trademark message even further, Fairey has moved beyond the streets and now owns his own clothing line (Obey Clothing).

For a more detailed description of Shepard Fairey's work and ideas, visit

My question for readers is:

With Fairey's work being a statement on how media can take over the public, do you think him owning a clothing line completely contradicts his message by promoting purchases or do you think it just further promotes the idea of how people "obey?"

1. I don't think that owning a clothing line completely contradicts Fairey's message by promoting purchases, rather I believe owning a clothing line is an excellent way for him to get his message out. The more people that see Shepard Fairey's Obey Propaganda, the more interest his art, and as a result his message will receive. In a sense it further promotes the idea of how people "obey," but only at the cost of the promotion of Fairey's criticisms of society. (E. Foltz)

2. I don't it does. Fairey is doing what he has to get his message out. To get awareness sometimes you get involved with the very system you are against to turn heads. Either way it is a great way to get his message out. ( Phoward)

Good points guys. Evan you're right, I think Fairey isn't being hypocritical but just raising awareness of his idea even further than the streets. Fairey tries to promote his message through as many art mediums as possible. Similar to KAWS, he also now has shows in galleries in California, therefore raising more awareness. And Prentice I agree that any way to promote his message is usually a good thing, as long as the message remains strong and doesn't turn into something it's not. (D. Sedar)