Are high rents driving NYC artists to LA?

Street artist Shepard Fairey argues that NYC artists are “screwed”

Chelsea and artist Shepard Fairey
Chelsea and artist Shepard Fairey

New York City’s high cost of living will be the death of its art scene, according to street artist Shepard Fairey, best known for designing the widely used “Hope” poster during Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign.

Fairey told the New York Post that New York City artists are fleeing to Los Angles en masse.

“You can’t be in New York and not have ­either a trust fund or a good enough job to live,” Fairey told the Post. “Artists are screwed in New York right now.”

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Fairey – a resident of LA — is currently completing a mural at 161 Bowery as part of The Little Italy Street Art Project.

“New York is incredibly successful, and one of the things that’s suffering is space for people to be struggling to make something that ­nobody’s seen before, or hear something ­nobody’s seen before, where they have no money and it’s not commercially viable yet, but it’s going to be the next thing. That’s happening in LA,” he added. [NYP]Christopher Cameron