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Shepard Fairey Illustrates the Difference Between Saks Fifth Avenue and Barack Obama

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Yesterday, Shepard Fairey's tote bags for Saks Fifth Avenue hit stores. The bags bear slogans like "WANT IT!" done in Fairey's usual mock-propaganda style, as if they were artifacts from some strange alternate universe in which the USSR was governed by hardcore capitalists who really, really wanted the people to shop.

We hate to pick on poor beleaguered Saks, especially since they're giving $15 to charity for every $20 bag sold, but this collaboration feels like a very strange match. Is it possible that they think they can replicate Fairey's success with the Obama campaign? Or is this more a matter of, you know, cred? After all, Fairey's a street artist, a counterculturalist, a guy who puts stickers where stickers aren't allowed to go. Put aside the question of whether the man himself has any kind of edge—either way, he isn't going to be able to bestow it on a major luxury retailer.
· Armed with art [LAT]