Shepard Fairey’s latest work on Dumbo Walls right outside of the York Street F station is done.
Gothamist spoke to Shepard Fairey, and wrote a detailed description of the new mural:
Since he has been coming here in 1990, DUMBO has obviously changed. “I used to come over here and bomb in the late ’90s and it was tumbleweeds. There was nothing going on over here. But everyone always goes ‘I loved SoHo in the ’90s. I loved Bowery when CBGB’s was there.’ There’s always that moment where a place goes from being totally crappy to having a bunch of artists and cool bars and gallery spaces and then it gets too expensive and it gets yuppified.
“I think [DUMBO] is in that transitional phase, but it’s a cool neighborhood. There’s no point in having a sort of romantic attachment to a neighborhood the way it was in a specific moment of time because everything is in flux. Shit’s always changing—if you’re bummed about it go pioneer the next neighborhood.”
Fairey’s new piece is a large mural with “Peace” on the left and “Justice” on the right, so we couldn’t help but think of Trayvon Martin. Those two words were prominent in rallies in New York and across the country (“No Justice, No Peace,” “Justice for Trayvon”). “I’ve incorporated peace and justice in several of my images over the past few years,” Fairey told us. “Having to do something that the city is going to approve and making it pretty with these floral motifs but incorporating the ‘Peace’ and ‘Justice’ in there was a way to subtly get to people’s conscious and consciousness. ‘Justice’ especially is a very open-ended word, but if you think about it and the Trayvon case and you feel like justice wasn’t really done— which is what I think—it’s just harder to sweep it under the rug.”
Interesting. No? My take on the mural is a linear projection of a career that has plateaued. The addition of “Peace and “Justice” is nothing more than a co-opting to give, how you say? Gravitas to otherwise pretty liftart.