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This image is about privacy and freedom from digital surveillance. If you didn’t notice, there is a camera aperture in the gun barrel. I think the right to privacy is paramount to the concept of freedom. Fear tactics have always been used to erode freedoms and increase the power and reach of government. Abuse of power is far more likely to happen if structures are in place that make abuse easier. The Patriot Act and the NSA surveillance program are examples of overreach under the guise of “protecting” us from terrorists, but they leave far too much room for potential abuse. Pervasive surveillance, even if intended for law enforcement,  gathers data that is far too easy to abuse for a personal or political agenda.  I respect due process and I think our government should too. Civil liberties are hard to recover once they are surrendered. The Worldwide Wave of Action opposes the NSA spying and  many other areas of injustice and inequality. Check it out here.

My friend, David DeGraw, just weighed in with his thought that Fight For the Future & EFF are two of the best orgs on the NSA  spying issue. Check them out!
-Shepard

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Pieces of Heaven | Auction to benefit The Art of Elysium

I’ve been working with The Art of Elysium for some time because I believe in creating harmony and working together to inspire one another.  “Elysium” is defined as a place or condition of ideal happiness and the mission of The Art of Elysium is to encourage artists of all mediums to voluntarily dedicate their time and talent to children who are battling serious medical conditions.  Art is tangible and whenever kids make art it gives them something to hold and be proud of.  In this sense, it’s a form of therapy.  When I see kids make art, I see them dream.  I’m happy to be a part of The 7th Annual Charitable Art Auction PIECES OF HEAVEN that is going on right now to benefit these kids and inspire them to imagine a better world.


You can preview and bid on items from over 70 artists, including myself by visiting:  www.paddle8.com/auctions/theartofelysium
All proceeds from the auction will benefit Elysium. Bidding will end at 12:45 AM EST February 27 (9:45 PM PST February 26).

 – Shepard

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Shepard Fairey x RISK x Skid Row Mural

I finished a new mural yesterday, with the help of my crew, that is my third collaboration with RISK. This mural builds upon the approach RISK and I took for the Peace & Justice mural we did in Miami, but pushes the collaborative process further. This time RISK painted the backgrounds and I painted the foreground, but we collaborated on the foreground imagery and concept. RISK is a big Led Zeppelin fan(as am I) and since the mural is on LA’s Skid Row,RISK wanted to include “GOOD TIMES – BAD TIMES” as a Zep reference and comment on the unstable nature of good fortune known too well by the residents of Skid Row. I followed suit by incorporating “JUSTICE TONIGHT” a reference to the Clash’s cover of Willie Williams’ “Armagideon Time” with its lyric “A lot of people won’t get no supper tonight, a lot of people won’t get no justice tonight”. RISK also did me the honor of drawing OBEY letters in his graffiti style to go alongside his RISK lettering and create a symmetry with the frame elements I designed. Our mural is permit number 1 after the lift on the mural maratorium facilitated by Daniel Lahoda and the Skid Row Housing Trust. I’m proud to be supporting the Skid Row Housing Trust and hopefully encouraging more property owners to provide walls for artists. Thanks to RISK and my crew of Nic Bowers, Z Bomit, Rob Z, and Dan Flores. Jon Furlong took some great photos.
-Shepard

Check out this article on the mural collaboration in the LA Times

Obey X Risk Mural from jon furlong on Vimeo.

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OBEY CLOTHING Artist Series: Deedee Cheriel

Nalini ‘Deedee’ Cheriel is a visual artist who started out creating record covers and T-shirts for the Oregon music scene in the early ‘90s.  Born in the hippie town of Eugene, Oregon, she began her own band and record label at the age of 19.  Influenced by the popular DIY culture of that time, she played in several all-girl bands (Juned, Adickdid, The Teenangels, The Hindi Guns) and co-created the semi-autobiographical film Down and Out with the Dolls. This artist has lived and studied abroad: Honduras, Chile, England, Portugal, Spain and her native India.
Now residing in Los Angeles, Cheriel’s work explores narratives that recognize the urgency and conflict in our continuing attempts to connect to the world.  With influences derived from such opposites as East Indian temple imagery, punk rock, and her Pacific Northwest natural environment, her images are indications of how we try to connect ourselves to others and how these satirical and heroic efforts are episodes of compassion and discomfort.  Bold elements drawn from landscapes -both urban and natural- and pop culture suggest the ability to find commonalities and relationships between ourselves and our surroundings that inevitably confirm our greater humanity and quest towards love.
For more info visit: www.deedeecheriel.com
For clothing visit: www.obeyclothing.com

DeeDee Cheriel OBEY Artist Series from OBEY CLOTHING on Vimeo.

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Robert Greenwald turns his lens on Drone warfare in ‘Unmanned’

Brave New Films do amazing projects dealing with politics and social justice. Check out this piece on them and consider supporting them!    -Shepard

Robert Greenwald, whose polemical documentaries have taken on Fox News and the Koch brothers, focuses on the Obama administration’s use of drones. READ THE LA TIMES ARTICLE HERE.

Click here to Donate.

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PUNK ROCK FANCY

I will be DJ’ing at Noise Pop with Bob Mould, who beyond being an awesome musician as a member of Husker Du, Sugar, and as a solo artist, is a kick ass DJ. If you are in, or can head to, San Francisco, check out Noise Pop and our DJ gig.  It is sure to be a very fun party. -Shepard

Noise Pop Opening Night Party Tue. 02/25 | 5:30PM @ The NWBLK (map)

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This New Wave Is A Little Slick For My Taste

I enjoy doing illustrations of water with its  hypnotic ripples and reflections. There’s oil in this water, which mixes ok in an illustration, but not so well in real life. I want future generations to inhabit a livable planet, so I will be donating a portion of the proceeds from this print to the NRDC Natural Resources Defense Council. They are concerned with changing policy to achieve environmental and energy solutions, not just putting a band-aid on existing problems. Check them out at nrdc.org
-Shepard

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Burroughs 100 Years

I collaborated with Kate Simon, the photographer behind the first Clash album cover and the Bob Marley “Kaya” cover, on this image of writer William S. Burroughs in celebration of what would be his 100th birthday on Feb. 5th. Burroughs is often associated with the Beat writers and collaborated with Jack Kerouac, but in his long career he produced an amazingly diverse body of writing.  Burroughs was a true outsider and his voice was consistently provocative and evocative. As a  drug user and explorer of the seedier side of things, Burroughs had a disdain for authority and the square life. I love his quote “how I hate those who are dedicated to producing conformity”. I read Naked Lunch in high school, and I was fascinated by it, but I found it challenging. I have recently been reading Word Virus, a compilation of Burroughs’ writing, at Kate Simon’s recommendation. Word Virus is a great intro if you are unfamiliar with Burroughs. Kate also shot the cover image for the book.    -Shepard

I was taken by William Burroughs’ presence and intelligence from the first time I was introduced to him, by: Lester Bangs in 1975. He was thrilling to listen to. When you heard him speak, you felt that you were privy to such a rare mind. Even in small-talk, he spoke with perfect economy of language. His shoots with me were very collaborative and it was an incredible opportunity to be able to photograph him over the course of twenty years.

Kate Simon

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ACLU’s Constitution Day Winner

The ACLU is an organization I believe in strongly, especially in this current climate of fear and shrinking civil liberties. I was recently asked by the ACLU to judge a school contest of art dealing with civil liberties in America. The kids put some great stuff together and I think the winning submission by middle school students from Hasten Hebrew Academy in Indianapolis, demonstrates a strong understanding of important issues as well as a great visual solution. I’m very happy to support a project that combines creativity with social consciousness.
-Shepard

Visit: constitutionday.aclu.org

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Face to *Face Collaborative Print x Book Launch

My good friend D*FACE asked me to write an essay for his monograph: D*FACE – One Man & His Dog.  I was honored to do it because we are long time friends and I’m a big fan of his art.  His book turned out incredible in both design and content.  I’m proud to be part of it. For D*Face’s LA book launch we decided to do a collaborative print signed by both of us.  The edition is only 200 so get them while you can!
-Shepard

Book Launch & Print Release
Wednesday, Feb 5th
5pm – 8pm

Stephen Webster
202 N Rodeo Drive
Beverly Hills, 90210
stephenwebster.com

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