The Best Friend is deeply honored by Shepard Fairey’s generosity in allowing us to distribute his poster “Freedom to Lead” in Thailand, Germany and the Netherlands. All proceeds from this poster, sold by us, will go to The Best Friend and in this way support the monks movement for peace, freedom and democracy in Burma that started in 2007 as the Saffron Revolution.
Daw Aung San Suu Kyi, Burma’s pro-democracy leader and Nobel Peace laureate, who has been held under house arrest for more than 14 of the last 20 years, symbolizes the struggle for freedom of Burma’s people. She is, as Shepard Fairey’s poster portrays, the symbol of hope in Burma.
During the last presidential election, Shepard Fairey’s poster “Hope” of Barack Obama achieved the rare feat of becoming a visual emblem of a moment in American history. Although the skateboarding street-artist who was best known for his OBEY sticker campaign had become a successful artist and designer, it was Obama “Hope” that launched his international fame.
Shepard describes his OBEY campaign, based on Heidegger’s concept of phenomenology, as an “experiment in phenomenology” and “the process of letting things manifest themselves.”
“Phenomenology attempts to enable people to see clearly something that is right before their eyes but obscured; things that are so taken for granted that they are muted by abstract observation.”
The project involved stickering, stenciling, and painting slogans and images in public spaces in major cities around the world. In a very related spirit, monks have been spreading “stop violence” stickers inside Burma already before the Saffron Revolution. And in an extension of that same spirit, we have been spreading our “Peace in Burma Now” stickers, T-shirts and bags around the world as well as inside Burma.
We are in the process of printing “Freedom to Lead” posters and will start to distribute them largely in the Burma border areas soon. It will be part of our coming peace march in September and all our future activities as well.
As referenced in one of Shepard Fairey’s original metaphors about the posse, which is a group of common citizens gathered by the local sheriff in the wild west to get on their horses and go after the bad guy, we ask you to buy this poster and join our posse. Support the movement for peace in Burma now and use our freedom to give Daw Suu her Freedom to Lead.
- Peace Festival Berlin
- Burma Voices – speaking out in freedom
- The Best Friend goes to Washington
- We believe it is possible
- PRESS RELEASE: ARREST YOURSELF for AUNG SAN SUU KYI and the PEOPLE OF BURMA
- Peace Walk in Mae Sot
- "As long as I am alive I will struggle for freedom and justice in Burma"
- Press Release: The Best Friend Helps Families Move Away From Rubbish Dump
- International March for Freedom in Rome