Shepard Fairey is an American graphic designer turned street artist who is perhaps most well known for the iconic “HOPE” posters used in Obama’s 2008 campaign. I’ve been familiar with his work for a while, so I was excited to see that he had made an appearance in Copenhagen!
I later discovered that his work in the city was sort of commissioned by a gallery called V1 in the old meatpacking district, which has been revitalized into a hip area with galleries and restaurants. Some of the work was greeted with much controversy.
I was fortunate enough to get to see the gallery exhibit before it closed. It was interesting to see Fairey playing with some of his usual images and themes in a more traditional setting and with different materials.
While I really enjoyed the gallery and think it shows Fairey’s growth as an artist, it does raise an interesting question about street artists who step off the street: are they selling out, or just being smart and trying to make a living off their work?