the philosophy of obey

July 02, 2008

Sarah Jaye Williams knows art history, art theory, and has followed my Obey art and ideas throughout my career. She has compiled quotes for the “Philosophy of Obey” book by meticulously reading hundreds of my articles and interviews. These quotes touch on a broad range of topics and show the evolution of my positions over the years. There is humor, irreverence, hope, pessimism, anger, jubilation, and even maybe some wisdom mixed in with all the potentially contradictory thoughts and emotions. I think there is substantial food for thought in this spectrum statements. Check it out.
-Shepard Fairey

The Philosophy of Obey (Obey Giant):
The Formative Years (1989 – 2008)
By Sarah Jaye Williams
NerveBooks UK

Three (3) Versions of the book are available at
Comprehensive, Volume I and Volume II

“The Philosophy of Obey (Obey Giant) is one of the fundamental texts of 21st Century aesthetics – short, bold, candid, puzzling and remarkable in its power to stir the imagination of philosophers and artists alike.”

Arguably one of the most compelling works of philosophy and art written in the twentieth-first century, Philosophy of Obey is the only artistic — philosophical work that Obey has published during its campaign. Written in short, carefully numbered sentences of extremely revealing candor, it will capture the imagination of a generation of Street Artists and philosophers. For Obey, discourse is something we use to examine reality which is in itself both elusive and unobtainable. Obey famously summarized this book in the following words: “I aim to bring something new to every artwork.” The work is prefaced by Sarah Jaye Williams introduction to the first edition.

Obey Giant (1989 – 2008). Regarded by many as one of the most significant street art campaigns.