Tuesday, September 1, 2009


Click above to read an interesting email.

From the NEA website: "The National Endowment for the Arts is a public agency dedicated to supporting excellence in the arts, both new and established; bringing the arts to all Americans; and providing leadership in arts education. Established by Congress in 1965 as an independent agency of the federal government, the Endowment is the nation's largest annual funder of the arts, bringing great art to all 50 states, including rural areas, inner cities, and military bases."

About the new Director of Communications for the NEA:

With a degree from UCLA in World Arts and Culture, Yosi Sergant had an early career marked by a curious combination of working with both the former prime minister of Israel, Yitzhak Rabin, and controversial filmmaker Larry Clark. For six months he and the company he works for, Jennifer Gross’ Evolutionary Media Group, served as media consultants to the Obama campaign. But then he ran into street artist and guerrilla marketer Shepard Fairey at a party in February. Sergant engaged Fairey in a discussion about the upcoming election. And when he found out that the artist was an Obama enthusiast, Sergant asked Fairey if he was doing anything to help the candidate get elected. The next day Fairey called, wondering if he thought the Obama camp would mind if he made a poster. Sergant immediately realized the power an iconic image by Fairey could have and decided that he and Evolutionary Media Group could be more effective if they worked outside the confines of the official Obama campaign and teamed up with Fairey instead.

Since then, Fairey has printed and distributed some 250,000 “Hope” and “Progress” posters across America. The Obama campaign ended up commissioning Fairey to launch an Artists for Obama program with a run of 5,000 “Change”Obama posters. And Fairey, who reinvests all the proceeds in the HOPE media campaign, made the image file available for free downloads, so it’s impossible to say exactly how many reproductions of his work are currently out there.

Sergant also sparked 14 national Obama poster campaigns by artists, including Ron English’s “Abraham Obama” traveling mural. And, he created an Obama bicycle-spoke card with an image by artist Margaret Coble specifically for the Portland, Oregon, primaries. “Everyone [in Portland] rides a bike,” Sergant says. “It was a small investment, and it made an impact in the indie-hipster world, ending up in Paperand Bicycle magazines and on countless blogs, with no promotion.”


Mike West said...

We don't even need a NEA - especially since the govt is broke.

twest said...

When the Republicans gain control again that will probably be the end of the NEA. It has survived attempts at de-funding (a method Congress uses to get rid of programs without going through any legislation) but can pop up again with a change of power. I fully support the goals of the NEA as stated, but some of the projects they have supported with taxpayer money are highly questionable - hiding under freedom of expression. Now this blatent political stance will surely do them in.

If these posters are the ones I'm thinking of, I believe they ran into some copyright issues with the photographer that took the original photos. But, hey, he probably got mowed over by attorneys for the NEA....