Frank Shepard Fairey was born in 1970 in South Carolina and is an artist, graphic designer, and illustrator. He attended the Rhode Island School of Design and received a BA in illustration in 1992.
The artist at a book signing
Philosophy and Style
Fairey founded a small printing business in Providence, RI called Alternate Graphics, specializing in t-shirt and sticker silkscreens. His art is highly political but has also often been criticized as shameless self-promotion.
Shepard Fairey is most famously known for his “Obey Giant” campaign, spread by stencils, murals, and large wheatpaste posters. Read about it here.
Most recently, the artist created the series of posters supporting Barack Obama’s candidacy for President in 2008, including the “HOPE” portrait shown below.
Fairey created two distinct images, “Change” and “Vote”, for use by the official Obama Campaign, and distributed 300,000 stickers and 500,000 posters during the election campaign. Obama personally thanked Fairey in a letter for supporting his campaign.
Fairey is also on the advisory board of Reaching to Embrace the Arts, a not-for-profit organization that provides art supplies to disadvantaged schools and students.