Keith Haring

This brilliant man worked with artists and performers as diverse as Madonna, Grace Jones, Bill T. Jones, William Burroughs, Timothy Leary, Jenny Holzer, Yoko Ono and Andy Warhol.

Keith Haring became part of a lengthy yet intermittent tradition among 20th-century artists who introduced aspects of popular culture, “low art,” and non-art components into the formerly exclusive realms of “high art” found in museums and galleries. He harnessed the techniques and environments associated with street art, such as graffiti and murals, incorporated vivid and artificial hues, and maintained a readily understandable visual language to capture the attention and intellect of observers. His goal was to encourage both enjoyment and engagement with significant issues. In tandem with fellow contemporary artists like Jean-Michel Basquiat and Kenny Scharf, Haring pioneered a new realm of possibilities, demonstrating how apparently simplistic and even cartoonish elements by self-taught or less formally trained artists could be appreciated.