Monday, May 26, 2008

keith harring & public art

i was waiting for Pan Tostado to get his eyes checked and get new glasses at the Moscot store on orchard street and they had this vintage sunglasses display decorated with some photographs keith haring's paintings, along with a neon painted boombox (unfort, sunglasses were not for sale). we walked out of Moscot and spotted STREETSIES left and right before passing the keith haring tribute mural on houston & bowery painted in honor of haring's (would be) 50th birthday.

all in all, it was a great day for street art spottin. isn't it nice to be able to enjoy your outdoor surroundings? sometimes in the winter its hard for me to avoid being overcome with negative energy and just GETTING wherever i'm going because its so cold and dark and grey outside. in summer everything slowsssssssss down.

here are some photographs of keith harings work (1958-1990), and a superficial bio.

Haring, originally from PA, moved to new york in 1978. he disagreed with the museum system and focused his artistic energy on creating an accessible form of public art. to keith, art was about reaching as many people as possible.

in 1980 Haring found his forte while experimenting with public art on the subway. he noticed that unused advertising panels in subway stations were covered with black matte paper. haring began drawing with white chalk on these panels, sometimes producing as many as forty "subway drawings" per day. haring says the subway became a "laboratory" for experimentation.

Haring rolled with kenny scharf, basquiat, and andy warhol. he painted over 50 public murals between 1982-1989 in parks, on buildings, in hospitals, orphanages, and day care centers, and for charities. many of haring's works bear social messages.

Haring painted the Crack is Wack mural on the FDR in 1986. he also worked with over 900 children to create a mural for the 100 year anniversary statue of liberty anniversary, and a mural on the western side of the Berlin Wall three years before its fall.

Haring, an openly gay man, died of AIDS in 1989 after being diagnosed in 1988.

check out his online store (the NYC store closed). they have some great gifts and other stuff to dress up your crib.

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