Medium: Screenprint on anodized aluminum
From the edition of 30, this is 16/30
Signed and dated "K Haring '89" on recto
Size: 40.63 x 57"
Social activist and artist Keith Haring is internationally acclaimed for his tremendous contribution to the Pop Art movement, as well as to graffiti culture. His beloved loose and colorful works came into popularity after the recognition of his early chalk drawings, which were spontaneously scattered throughout subway cars in New York City. Haring’s signature style, with its bold lines and vivid colors, contrasted starkly to that of his predecessors. Displaying a shift from abstract expressionism to gestural expressionism via the use of his innovative line form, Haring used stark lines to depict certain energy in his subjects, as well as to maintain the overall simplicity of his unique iconography.
Keith Haring held his first solo exhibition in 1982 at Tony Shafrazi’s New York Gallery. By this time, the artist had fostered strong friendships with fellow emerging artists such as Jean Michel Basquiat, Kenny Scharf, and with superstar Andy Warhol. Indeed, Haring was quickly gaining international recognition. Following this, Haring, who remains infamous for his views on birth, death, love, war, and sex, was commissioned to create various mural projects around the world. Most notably, in 1986, Haring was commissioned by the Checkpoint Charlie Museum to paint a mural on the Berlin Wall. Later, Haring began to focus on socio-political themes such as AIDS awareness and the cocaine epidemic. In 1989, he established the renowned Keith Haring Foundation, a creative non-profit organization dedicated to the raising of AIDS awareness.
Born in Pennsylvania in 1958, Keith Haring grew up influenced by Walt Disney cartoons, Dr. Seuss, and his father, who in addition to being an engineer was also an amateur cartoonist. After an initial involvement with the Jesus Movement, Haring abandoned his religious background to pursue his studies in commercial art at Pittsburgh’s Ivy School of Professional Art. Upon losing interest in this path, he settled on a maintenance job at the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts, which provided the setting that ultimately inspired his motivation for creating art. Shortly afterwards, Haring decided to move to New York to study painting at the School of Visual Arts. Keith Haring was diagnosed with AIDS in 1988 and died in 1990, but his works still live on in important collections throughout the world, such as the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C.
Long-Sharp Gallery suggests resources such as these be consulted on the works and life of American Pop Artist Keith Haring:
The Keith Haring Foundation