Upper Playground Releases Volume II of adidas Original Sneaker Line: David Choe

Juxtapoz // Monday, July 21, 2008
As a follow-up to the Herbert Baglione release last week, on Thursday, July 24th Upper Playground will release the new David Choe adidas Originals sneaker. The Stan Smith shoe is the second release in the four-part series that also includes designs from Aesop Rock and Sam Flores. Los Angeles native David Choe is a muralist and graphic artist. He has designed and produced apparel, comic books, movie posters, album covers, fine art books and toys, among many other projects. Choe has collaborated with companies such as Electronic Arts, Levi’s, Sony Pictures and now adidas. “I wanted to convey a mixture of serial killers, ninjas, nightmares, and Ice-T lyrics,” commented David Choe about his new sneaker. Choe is currently the star of a feature documentary on his life called Dirty Hands. The film documents Choe, a young near-schizophrenic street artist that devises numerous criminal schemes that allow him to hitchhike across the globe. Details about the film can be found here www.dirtyhandsmovie.com There are only 500 pairs of the Choe sneaker available worldwide. Sizes range from men's size 4 to 13.5. To pick up your fresh pair of David Choe Stan Smith sneakers, visit www.upperplayground.com or head to a UP retail store. The sneaker will go on sale online at 8 am PT on Thursday, July 24, 2008.

Shepard Fairey Donates "OBAMA HOPE" to Art For Life 2008 Auction

Juxtapoz // Tuesday, July 15, 2008
For the ninth year in a row, Rush Philanthropic Arts Foundation is preparing for its highly anticipated annual benefit, Art For Life, to be held on Saturday, July 19, 2008 at the home of Russell Simmons in East Hampton. The organization was founded by the three Simmons brothers -- hip-hop mogul Russell, Joseph "Rev. Run" Simmons of the pioneering rap group Run-DMC, and visual artist Danny Simmons - as an outgrowth of their personal experience of overcoming adversity through music and art, and their passionate desire to help artists and young people who face the same struggle. This year’s event, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, will raise funds to support arts and educational programs for thousands of New York area urban youth. Among the pieces up for auction is this OBAMA HOPE original, donated by the artist, Shepard Fairey. Unless you’ve been living in a cave, you know that Fairey has created a series of posters supporting Barack Obama's candidacy for President in 2008, which led a massive grassroots street awareness campaign. Fairey's PROGRESS, HOPE, and CHANGE posters have created a huge impact in the visibility of the Obama Campaign, in which Senator Obama, himself, personally thanked Fairey for making this art. Details on Art for Life at rushphilanthropic.org

Upper Playground x adidas Originals

Juxtapoz // Wednesday, July 09, 2008
Upper Playground announced today that they will be releasing an exclusive sneaker series with adidas Originals next week. The new shoe line features four signature designs from fine artists Sam Flores, David Choe, Herbert Baglione, and hip hop artist Aesop Rock. Beginning next Thursday, July 17th, Upper Playground will release a new sneaker every Thursday. Each sneaker design will be available for sale at Upper Playground retail stores and online at www.upperplayground.com The new sneaker series is not the first time Upper Playground has collaborated with adidas Originals. In 2005, Upper Playground partnered with adidas Originals to create a limited-edition BBQ themed sneaker in celebration of the 35th anniversary of the adidas Superstar. The synthesis of one of our favorite shoe brands with four of our favorite artists is almost too much goodness to handle. Luckily, we have a pretty high tolerance for goodness. Stay tuned for more info on these epic releases coming soon.

Upper Playground LA / Mister Cartoon & Estevan Oriol

Juxtapoz // Thursday, May 22, 2008
SF-based apparel and art company Upper Playground, photographer and director Estevan Oriol, and artist Mister Cartoon are excited to announce the unveiling of a series of four one-of-a-kind retail establishments in the Skid Row area of downtown Los Angeles, offering customers a unique fashion and fine art experience. In celebration of the properties, the three entities will host a grand opening next Saturday, May 31st from 1-8pm that will feature a special art exhibit and appearances from some of the world’s leading designers involved in the project. As the pioneer of combining fashion and fine art, it seems fitting that Upper Playground will host a special art exhibit featuring the works of legendary artists: Usugrow, Sam Flores, Jeremy Fish, David Choe, Herbert Baglione, San, Retna, Saber, Alex Pardee, Ron English, Doze Green, Slick, Armsrock and David Ellis. Many of the featured artists on display also contribute designs to Upper Playground’s apparel line. In addition to Upper Playground, the new venture includes “The Last Laugh,” which will house the Mister Cartoon and Estevan Oriol retail experiences. Learn more about this exciting project, and get a peek at some new t-shirt graphics Upper Playground has ready for the LA store right here…

Shepard Fairey Hits the Books

Juxtapoz // Monday, April 14, 2008
It’s hard not to judge a book by its cover. In that case, it looks like two of George Orwell’s classic books, Animal Farm and 1984, just may be getting a resurgence of readers, as Penguin Books recently asked Shepard Fairey to redesign two covers for them. Maybe this is the best way to get kids to pick up a real book and start reading again! See the other cover here.

Obey Giant Prints

Juxtapoz // Thursday, April 10, 2008
In the past two years, Shepard Fairey has received more love and acclaim than most artists do in nine lives. Having been in the street art, and then fine art, game for years, Shepard has created an empire many kings would envy. With collectors all over the globe scrambling for his work, Shepard’s art can get quite pricey. Thankfully, the good folks at Toyroom Gallery have three new limited edition Shepard prints available at feasible prices. This Obey Giant SSI/Mea Culpa print comes in three different color versions, but the one shown may be our favorite. Why? Because this red and blue beauty comes with a pair of 3D glasses. As if Shepard weren’t cool enough- now you can enjoy his work in multiple dimensions! Cop your print at toyroomgallery.com.

Shepard Fairey at Merry Karnowsky Dec 1st

Juxtapoz // Saturday, December 01, 2007
And, because perhaps you want to round out this year with more of a good thing, Shepard Fairey's [JUXTAPOZ Issue #82] Imperfect Union drops this weekend at Merry Karnowsky. If you're not invited to the preview on Friday, November 29th, brave the stylish masses and prepare to jockey for a good view on Saturday night. Openings at Merry Karnowsky are always a hot item so go early if you really want to see the art. The exhibit will be up through January 5th.

Photos: Shepard Fairey at Stolen Space

Juxtapoz // Monday, November 05, 2007
We got a few pics from the November 2nd opening of Shepard Fairey's Nineteeneightyfouria at London's StolenSpace Gallery. The title is a reference to the surveillance culture in George Orwell's book 1984. The show is Fairey's largest exhibition to date, and it runs through November 25th.

Preview: Shepard Fairey "Nineteeneightyfouria"

Juxtapoz // Thursday, November 01, 2007
Chris Osburn brings us a preview from the set up of Nineteeneightyfouria, the largest solo Shepard Fairey exhibition to date. The show opens at StolenSpace in London, running from November 2nd until November 25th.

Shepard Fairey's New Book

Juxtapoz // Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Coming down the pipe in early December (just in time for your annual incurrence of holiday debt) is the latest book by our upcoming cover artist Shepard Fairey, E Pluribus Venom. The book is a compilation of the huge body of work he showed in Brooklyn and NYC through Jonathan LeVine Gallery earlier this year as well as extras intended to expand on the themes tackled in his art. From the product description on Amazon.com, "The title E Pluribus Venom which translates "Out of many, poison" is derived from E Pluribus Unum (out of many, one) an early motto adopted by the U.S. Government which appears on U.S. currency. The artist's thesis is that many becoming one, or a loss of power and influence of the individual in favor of homogeny is a symptom of a society in decline. E Pluribus Venom is comprised of artworks designed to question the symbols and methods of the American machine and American dream and also celebrate those who oppose blind nationalism and war. Some of Fairey's works use currency motifs or a Norman Rockwell aesthetic to employ the graphic language of the subjects they critique. Other works use a blend of Art Nouveau, hippie, and revolutionary propaganda styles to celebrate subjects advocating peace."

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