Keith Haring (1958-90) was preeminent among the young artists, performers, and musicians whose work responded to urban street culture of the 1980s. When he arrived in New York City at the age of 19 to enroll in the School of Visual Arts, Haring found an alternative art world thriving outside the gallery and museum system, in the downtown streets, the subways, and clubs.
Inspired by the graffiti artists whose marks covered the city Haring began to draw in white chalk over the black paper used to cover vacant advertising panels. Not only was Haring was able to reach a large and diverse audience with his subway drawings, but, eventually became, as Haring said, a “labora- tory” for working out his ideas. He developed the series of images that would become his signature: the radiant baby , the barking dog and the running figure.
As early as 1982, Haring began exhibiting in galleries and museums around the world but continued to participate in public projects, including literacy campaigns and anti-AIDS initiatives. Building on earlier impulses to draw on everything from refrigerator doors to vinyl tarpaulins, Haring continued to use a variety of media in order to communicate to a massive audience, essential themes such as birth, death, love and war.
Keith Haring died of AIDS in New York in February 1990, he has since been the subject of several international retrospectives. His work is in major private and public collections, including those of the Museum of Modern Art; the Whitney Museum of Art; Art Institute of Chicago; the Bass Museum in Miami; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Ludwig Museum, Cologne; and Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam. Keith Haring’ imagery has become a universally rec- ognized visual language of the 20th century.
Keith Haring, Subway Tile Coasters, 2004,
Edition of 3000 sets of 6, stamp signed ceramic tiles with glazed decal, cork backing, each tile: 4 1/4” x 4 1/4” / 11cm x 11cm.
Item no. 12140