Sunday, February 8, 2009
Shepard Fairey busted in Boston
Internationally acclaimed graffiti-graphics king Shepard Fairey, who recently achieved new fame as the designer of Obama's "Hope" campaign poster, has been arrested in Boston for alleged tagging.
Fairey was on his way to the Institute of Contemporary Art to DJ at a sold-out party kicking off his first solo exhibition, "Supply and Demand". Unbeknownst to him, two arrest warrants had been issued on January 24 after police determined that he had tagged property in two locations with his street art campaign featuring Andre the Giant and the word "obey," according to Boston police officer James Kenneally.
Fairey was released a few hours after his arrest, and is scheduled to be arraigned Monday.
Fairey may or may not have actually done the tagging while he was in town, but my question is, exactly how did the Boston police determine that he was directly responsible? Fairey makes his stickers and stencils widely available worldwide, and I daresay that 90 percent of the Andre/Obey tagging being done out there nowadays is done by persons other than Fairey himself.
Boston, you may recall, is the same place where police and the mayor went completely batshit crazy in 2007, and tried to treat a lightbox guerilla-marketing campaign for "Aqua Teen Hunger Force" as a "terrorism hoax" and shut down portions of the city at great expense. The mayor and the police crassly attempted to position themselves as valiant crime-fighting heroes for this surreal debacle of their own making. Of the 10 cities in which the Lite-Brite-like LED displays were placed only Boston saw them as a matter of concern, and the installations had been up for weeks prior to the hysteria.