Shepard Fairey, the artist who designed the poster of the US former president, Barack Obama, has announced that he will auction his artworks as an NFT on March 29 and will donate a considerable amount of the returns to Amnesty International. The artwork is affixed to a digital portrait tagged “Obey Ideal Power” and displayed on the NFT market, Super Rare. At present, blockchain idealists and numerous artists have been adding to the hype about the NFT, creating different sorts of GIFs, games, audios, and making thousands and even millions of dollars in return.
NFT’s Adverse Ecological Effects
But beyond the NFT Craze, there are huge costs. One of the major drawbacks of the NFT revolution is its adverse ecological effect on the environment. Added to that are the copyright cases that will arise in the course of the NFT craze. Also, exclusivity is a matter of concern mainly because it appears only crypto techies with large social media following are the ones making money off the hype. Lastly, how sure are we that NFT is not a secret and new way of money laundering? Besides, after buying a JPEG for millions of dollars, are you sure it will stay forever on the blockchain, or will it be replaced or removed.
The NFT is now facing harsh criticisms of the disastrous environmental impact. This has prompted artists to devise means of advertising their NFTs in an environmentally friendly way. For example, Aphex Twin promised to spend the returns he would get from his NFT to plant trees. Likewise, Nifty Gateway, the popular NFT market, wants to set aside a significant portion of its forest conservation funds in Peru. As for Fairey, he plans to support Amnesty International with part of his earnings from the NFT. Fairey’s NFT titled “Obey IdealPower” results from the partnership between Super Rare and Verisart, a firm that issues certificates for blockchain-related assets. On March 29, SuperRare will display Fairey’s work for auction.
How Fairey Supported Obama Campaign with the Iconic Portrait
The unique Obama portrait grabbed the headlines in the 2008 US presidential election. Before Fairey designed the iconic poster, he was famous for his unique aesthetic. Before that time, he had created several works on politics, with most criticizing politicians in a caricatured manner. After being impressed by Obama’s captivating campaign speech, Fairey resolved to help campaign for the candidate. The artist decided to help Obama in both the primary and the main presidential elections by portraying Obama as the candidate to bring hope and a smile to the face of Americans.
In his explanation, Fairey said he decided to use a blue, white, and red color mix to erase the racism sentiment off people’s minds. Likewise, he wanted to present Obama in a way that would “elevate his personality” in people’s minds. In Jan 2008, the artist started creating the iconic Obama poster and finished everything quickly. He illustrated the portrait to gaze upward and sideways, using JFK portrait. Fairey used a hybrid of digital and analog styles. He also enhanced the lighting and definition. He used the first word, “Progress,” as the campaign slogan. He also decided to use his art to amplify Obama’s idealism.