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By Nina J P Evans

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Want It!


In January 2009, but still notable, Saks Fifth Avenue hires Shepard Fairey and Cleon Peterson to design the spring marketing campaign. The campaign posters are inspired by Russian Constructivism, that began in 1919 onwards. “What we do every day, really, is propaganda,” said Terron E. Schaefer (the senior vice-president for marketing at Saks). Shepard Fairey states: “I thought it was a fun campaign for Saks with a lot of provocative irony.” Mitchell Markson says:
Consumers who once believed ‘bigger was better’ and ‘more was more’ are now downsizing expectations and resizing their needs—less may actually be the new more and social purpose the new social status for both brands and consumers. 
I agree that now we are choosing to shop for less, selecting fashion designs that are socially and environmentally responsible.

Some might say that Fairey is selling out by doing such commissions. However, he states: “I took on the Saks job to support the people in my studio.” Others are critical of Shepard Fairey's style by saying that it's not very original. I disagree… my only qualm is that I would have preferred seeing some small evidence of text on the posters that embraces the consumers social purpose, but hey maybe that’s written on the fashion labels. Interestingly his style is very apt for the American audience! (Link below) quotes:
America and Russia are very similar, especially in their understanding and conception of space. Both countries are huge countries with huge horizons and huge skies. And, both countries have long cultivated an interest in cosmic space and not only by scientists and inventors, but also by poets and painters. 
One thing for is sure about Fairey’s stuff is that it's not going to be ignored! Design isn’t just about style. There’s something very clever and current about adopting a style and developing fresh content, as a way of responding to today’s needs.


References:
Mitchell Markson - Social purpose becomes the new social status in Business. link
Cosmos y vanguardia rusa en la Fundación Botín en Santander. link (translations in English)

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