All Photos Courtesy of Juxtapose Dot Com
Thanks to Geoffrey’s incredible talent for scheduling an evening that includes multiple events located across town from each other, we were able to make an extended pit stop at Pace Prints for the opening night of Shepard’s Fairey’s amazing new exhibit, Harmony and Discord, wedged between attending a Kehinde Wiley opening on 29th Street and a lovely evening seeing Brendon Benson perform at the Bowery Ballroom. Timing!
Shepard Fairey is one of my favorite contemporary artists and this latest exhibit is the most exciting collection of his work that I’ve seen so far. Fairey created the works for Harmony and Discord in the Pace Editions studios in New York, which provided him with the opportunity to scale the work to a larger size, so the exhibit includes the largest screen prints he has done to date. If you are familiar with Shepard Fairey’s work you know that he started out as a street artist, creating the global “Obey” sticker campaign and continued his politically-themed art (Fairy’s best-known work is the iconic and much-copied Obama Hope poster) as he moved from the street into the galleries of New York, Los Angeles and Europe.
On view in Harmony & Discord are a number of silkscreens done with collage and spray paint, as well as handmade paper (his first works with this medium), embossment and relief prints, and large metal plates with screen print. Relating to the surfaces of his street work, the hand painted multiple (HPM) works in this series have backgrounds of stenciled pulp, collage, screen print and embossment, allowing the image to pop off of its vintage, layered surface. The Pace Prints exhibition also marks the first time Fairey is presenting metal relief plates as art pieces, layered with silkscreen, furthering spatial extent within the work. The metal plates are so finely detailed, and these were definitely my favorite pieces in the exhibit. You have to see them up close to appreciate how beautiful they are. I also really liked the pieces that were heavily influenced by the Comic Book Art motif of the late pop artist, Roy Lichtenstein.
Shepard was in attendance at Saturday’s opening and he was so nice and attentive to his fans! He will sign anything you have with you, pose for a photo, give you stickers and even take the time to thoroughly and thoughtfully answer any questions you ask him, even though many people were waiting to have five seconds with him. So nice! Thank you Shepard Fairey for your wonderful art and for being such a cool person!
Photo of Gail and Shepard by Geoffrey Dicker
Harmony and Discord will be on exhibit through June 16th, 2012 at Pace Prints, located at 521 West 26th Street, 3rd & 4th Floors, New York, NY 10001. Gallery Hours are Tuesday -Friday: 10: 00 AM to 6:00 PM and Saturday: 11:00 AM to 6:00 PM