The artist—who, with his “Hope” posters, made himself famous and, at the same time, helped push Barack Obama over the finish line—has soured on the president and now says that Obama has failed to live up to the hype.
In an interview with Esquire, artist Shepard Fairey said that Obama is “not even close” to succeeding in Washington.
Obama didn’t really even come up until the end of the interview, and then when he did, it wasn’t a favorable mention. Esquire asked Fairey if he thought that Obama has “lived up” to the “Hope” poster?
Fairey’s answer was: “Not even close.”
Essentially, Fairey feels that Obama has “compromised” too much and not followed through on the things he’s promised. With mixed pronouns Fairey claimed that the “system” was as much to blame as Obama.
“I’m not giving him a pass for not being more courageous,” Fairey said, “but I do think the entire system needs an overhaul and taking money out of politics would be a really good first step.”
The artist then ended the interview by calling Americans stupid for not voting the way he thinks they should. “We also need a public that isn’t so uneducated and complacent,” he said.
“I hate to say Americans are ignorant and lazy, but a lot of them are ignorant and lazy,” he added.
“But what frustrates me to no end are people who want to blame Obama or blame anything that is something that if they were actually doing anything as simple as voting, it might not be as bad as it is. There’s a lot of finger pointing and very little action and very little research into the dynamics that created the situation that they’re unhappy about,” Fairey concluded.
Fairey was arrested in 2009 in Boston for destruction of property and graffiti. He pleaded guilty to one count of defacing property and two counts of wanton destruction of property. Eleven other charges were eventually dropped.
He was sentenced to pay a graffiti removal service $2,000.
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