Saber at Opera Gallery - photo credits Arrested Motion

Saber /   Ryan Weston Shook

United States 1976


Ryan Weston Shook
United States
April 23, 2017

Ryan Weston Shook, known as Saber is an American fine artist, coming from a graffiti background. In 1997. when he was only 21, he created the world’s largest graffiti piece, nearly the size of a football field, on the bank of the LA River. It took him 35 nights to complete this work, and it definitely paid off since it was documented by satellites in space. Over the years, the artist has dedicated his work to helping bring public awareness to the true art form of graffiti, which often involved dangerous work, as graffiti artist don’t know for safety nets while painting in a dead of night. A whole generation of artists and graphic designers was influenced by Saber, as he became an influential part of the modern entertainment, social media, and art involved in social reform.

did you shop a piece print style second edition to change culture tags in river msk awr
Saber – Mural for Powwow Festival, Honolulu, 2015

Relax, It’s Just a Graffiti Rebellion

Fired up by a sense of social injustice, the artist put all of his artistic energy into high-profile political activism. Furious about the US health system, the artist released a video of him painting graffiti over painted flag of the USA in an attempt to emphasize the injustice of the system, in 2010. This brought him criticism from the US right and Fox News. In 2011, after some cuts to the arts and a new law censoring public murals, Saber commissioned light aircraft slogans across the LA and New York, causing an utter sensation. This artist is not afraid to change the system with his art, and he continually shows that.

Saber painted graffiti over the USA flag, becoming a new sensation

people just view an old book on social media post tags print edition in the culture style last year
Saber – Eviction, 2015

Creating Conversation

Besides the heroic aspect of his art, there is the commercial one, and it is no secret. Saber believes that an average person should be able to call his painting beautiful, even if they know nothing about graffiti. This is one of the most important things for the artist. It seems that this wish of his has gotten true since his pieces can be found in both galleries and private collections around the world. No matter the motive or the subject of his art, Saber never stops generating public conversations about the boundaries of art, all the while moving them further away.

The artist wants the average person to recognize his art as beautiful

view people contact Saber for his 2017 street art edition hitting world news for piece
Saber – Untitled, 2015

From Street to Gallery

Saber was born in Glendale, a suburb of Los Angeles, raised by very creative parents, a circumstance which helped him discover his passion for art at an early age. After seeing the spray paint-covered Belmont Tunnel, with his cousins, there was no turning back from his life path of an artist. He first worked solo, working on his skills, before he joined MSK, and later he was introduced into legendary piecing crew AWR. In 2002, he began exhibiting in his fine art. This artistic output included surreal cityscapes and detailed “new reality” canvases. Saber is no stranger to corporate projects with Scion, Montana Paint Company, Hyundai and much more. Saber continues to make his vibrant, enticing, and so often political paintings, right from his home in Los Angeles, where he lives with his wife and two young children.
He is represented by Allouche Gallery.

The artist lives and works in Los Angeles, California.

Featured image: Saber at Opera Gallery – photo credits Arrested Motion
All images via

YearExhibition TitleGallery/MuseumSolo/Group
2016Grand OpeningAllouche Gallery, New York, NYGroup
2015POW! WOW!Street Art Festival, Honolulu, Hawaii Group
2013SaberThe Outsiders Gallery, London, EnglandSolo
2013Tempest Group Pop Up ShowOpera Gallery, Miami Art Basel, FLGroup
2012Beautification Duel Show with RevokKnown Gallery, Los Angeles, CAGroup
2012Graff The Peace!Graff The War!Opera Gallery at the former Laennec Military, Paris, FranceGroup
2012Nuart FestivalStravenger, NorwayGroup
2012#DefendTheArtsSaber Skywriting Campaign Over New YorkNY Underbelly Paris
2011Solo ExhibitionOpera Gallery, New York, NYSolo
2011Art in the StreetsMuseum of Contemporary Art (MoCA), Los Angeles, CAGroup
2011Street Cred: Graffiti Art from Concrete to CanvasPasadena Museum of California Art, Pasadena, CAGroup
2010“Live Painting at Slovakian Presidential event"Bratislava, SlovakiaGroup
2010FreedomKnown Gallery, Los Angeles, CAGroup
2010DualityPop-Up show, Los Angeles CAGroup
2009“Saber Speaks”Organizing for America’s Health Reform Video Challenge (Top 20 Finalist)Group
2009Nimbus VaporOpera Gallery, New York, NYGroup
20091 Year Anniversary Art Exhibit & Live Painting ExhibitionMid-City Arts Gallery, Los Angeles, CAGroup
2009The Legendary Belmont TunnelCrewest Gallery, Los Angeles, CAGroup
2009Send Lawyers, Guns and MoneyCanvas L.A., Los Angeles, CAGroup
2008Royal Art Show, The Seventh Letter, MAGIC TradeshowLas Vegas, NVGroup
2008In The Land Of Retinal Delights: The Juxtapoz FactorLaguna Art Museum, Laguna Beach, CAGroup
2008“Graffiti Expo,” Urban Arts Festival and World Bboy Masters ChampionshipsR-16 Korea Sparkling, Gyeonggi, KoreaGroup
2008Life is Beautiful, Mr. Brainwash Pop-Up ShowCBS Studios, Hollywood, CAGroup
2008Will RiseRobert Berman Gallery, Santa Monica, CAGroup
2007SaberFIDM Museum Gallery, Los Angeles, CASolo
2007Close EncountersWhite Walls Gallery, San Francisco CASolo
2007All Writes Reserved: RETNA, REVOK & SABERPowerhouse Gallery, New York, NYGroup
2007Letters First, Barcelona, SpainLetters First, Barcelona, SpainGroup
2007Represent, Represent: The Tempt One Art BenefitURB Gallery, Culver City, CAGroup
2007BRAVE ArtUNIV, Encinitas, CAGroup
2007Skin VandalsGallery Anno Domini, San Jose, CAGroup
2007Dream Girls Art ShowMina Dresden Gallery, San Francisco, CaliforniaGroup
2006Letters First, Tokyo – TaipeiLetters First, Tokyo – TaipeiGroup
2006Superiority Complex, (curated by Saber)SCION Gallery, Los Angeles, CAGroup
2006L.A. ReprazentCrewest Gallery, Los Angeles, CAGroup
2006Art Work RebelsCachi Gallery, San Francisco, CAGroup
2006Saber & David ChoeMontana Shop & Gallery, Barcelona, SpainGroup
2006Scion Road TripTraveling ExhibitionGroup
2005L.A.: light/ motion/ dreamsNatural History Museum of Los Angeles County, Los Angeles, CAGroup
2005L.A. vs. Brazil222 Gallery, Los Angeles, CAGroup
2005Saber, Norm, Amanda Lynn, Joe Leonard & ReyesUpper Playground, San Francisco, CAGroup
2005SoothsayersScion installation L.A., Los Angeles, CAGroup
2005Installation: Scion Art TourMcCaig-Welles Gallery, Brooklyn, NYGroup
2004100 Artists See SatanGrand Central Arts Center, Fullerton, CAGroup
2004Installation: Scion Art TourTrack 16, Santa Monica, CAGroup
2004gra (FF) iteCrewest Gallery, Los Angeles, CAGroup
2004Nuevo AboSubject Matter Gallery, Costa Mesa CAGroup
2004Mad Society KingSubject Matter Gallery, Costa Mesa CASolo
2004Installation: Scion Art TourStudio Soto, Boston, MAGroup
2003Installation: Scion Art TourTraveling ExhibitionGroup
2003Still AliveSubject Matter Gallery, Costa Mesa CAGroup
2003Ayer RIPSubject Matter Gallery, Costa Mesa CAGroup
2003Street DreamsGhetto Gloss Gallery, Los Angeles CAGroup
2003Start SomaCoachella Gallery, San Francisco CAGroup
2003Obey/SaberSubject Matter Gallery, Costa Mesa CAGroup
2002Spray Can ArtQuark Hotel, Milan ItalyGroup
2002Contemporary Corruption IIZero One Gallery, Los Angeles CAGroup
2002Mary Magdalene ProjectStark-Kikuchi Gallery, Santa Monica CAGroup
2002Street DreamsGhetto Gloss Gallery, Los Angeles CAGroup
2002Contemporary Corruption IZero One Gallery, Los Angeles CAGroup