Artist: Shepard Fairey
Size: 24 x 18 Inches (60.96 x 45.72 cm)
Medium: Screen Print
Edition: of 450
Notes: Hand Signed and Numbered by the artist. Custom Framed. Additional Images Upon Request. Gallery COA Included.
Shepard Fairey was asked by his longtime friends at PAPER magazine to guest edit their art issue. He gladly accepted, and in the issue his friend and PAPER editor Carlo McCormick, wrote an essay about the evolution of visual culture from Pop Art to street art, and the impact of the internet and media saturation. To illustrate Carlo’s essay Fairey created the POW(ER) image. The image is an homage to influential Pop Artist Roy Lichtenstein, who appropriated and re-painted comic frames often transforming them in meaning and context. Fairey has often described his art as a fusion of Pop Art, street art, and political art. He utilizes the platform created by Pop Art, but tries to take his work even more directly to the people. Like Pop artists before him, he utilizes a vocabulary of familiar cultural visual references. In fact, after he conceived of the POW(ER) image and did some further research on Lichtenstein, he discovered an image he had made of a woman holding a can of spray paint or hairspray. The image looked familiar to him, because a few years ago he re-illustrated the same piece of clip art that Lichtenstein referenced for his spray paint/hair spray painting. The connection was was too serendipitous to ignore and Fairey proceeded to create the POW(ER) image. For Fairey street art has always been about populism and emPOWERment. The recent embrace of street art in the art world as a legitimate genre demonstrates the power of accessible, relatable imagery, and in many ways builds upon the triumphs of Pop Art.