Edition of 25
72.4 x 22 x 2 inch
Totem (Concrete) by Keith Haring
Bridging the gap between the art world and the street, Keith Haring rose to prominence in the early 1980s with his graffiti drawings made in the subways and on the sidewalks of New York City. Combining the appeal of cartoons with the raw energy of Art Brut and artists like Jean DuBuffet, Haring developed a distinct pop-graffiti aesthetic centered on fluid, bold outlines against a dense, rhythmic overspread of imagery like that of babies, barking dogs, flying saucers, hearts, and Mickey Mouse.
Keith Haring was an American artist and social activist responding to New York City’s street culture of the 1980s. His work is about birth, death, sex and war – very fitting for the period in which he lived and worked. Keith Haring was openly gay at a time when most non-heterosexuals kept their sexual proclivities behind closed doors. Part of Haring’s importance as an artist was how his art raised awareness of AIDS. Many of his works were featured in the Red Hot Organization’s efforts to raise money for AIDS research and AIDS awareness. Keith Haring himself died of AIDS in 1990 at age 32.
Along with Jean-Michel Basquiat, Haring was a central figure in Warhol’s creative and social circle. Through his public murals, subway drawings, as well as his prints and paintings, Haring created a range of images that have become internationally recognized and heavily iconicized across a bevy of genres and industries.