On 9 March 2022, the exhibition on Keith Haring opens at SCHUNCK in Heerlen.
The exhibition features early works (period 1980-1984) by the artist Keith Haring, who died young, and was loved and world-famous for his iconic cartoon-like figures.
With his energetic and playful lines, Haring addressed social themes such as racism, gay emancipation, the fight against AIDS and drug abuse. His work often came about spontaneously in public spaces. He found inspiration in New York, its nightlife and the people he met there. The exhibition explores the informal and performative nature of his work and the social themes that remain as relevant today as they were then. The exhibition also includes work by contemporaries from the New York art scene in the early 1980s. The central component of the exhibition is the European premiere of thirteen wall pieces from the Grace House Mural – a mural he made in former Catholic youth center in Manhattan, New York.
Keith Haring, Grace House Mural, Figure 1, 1983-84, Keith Haring art work copyright © Keith Haring Foundation
The American artist Keith Haring (1958 – 1990) lived and worked in New York. As a student at The School of Visual Arts, he came into contact with graffiti and street art, after which he devoted himself to making art accessible ‘to everyone’, in public spaces. He made over 50 public artworks, only half of which have been preserved.
The pieces from the Grace House Mural on show in March 2022 were taken out of the former Catholic youth centre in New York just before the building was going to be renovated. Keith also designed decorative products and T-shirts with his drawings on them – affordable to a wide audience – which he sold in his own shop The Pop Shop, with branches in New York and Tokyo.
Keith Haring died of AIDS at the age of 31. Shortly before his death, he founded the Keith Haring Foundation, which manages his archive and legacy, and funds educational and AIDS-related projects.
The Keith Haring exhibition will be organised in cooperation with the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) Denver, the province of Limburg and the municipality of Heerlen. For SCHUNCK, this is the second collaboration with MCA Denver, after the 2019 exhibition 'Basquiat: The Artist and his New York Scene'.
Read more about the exhibition 'Keith Haring: Grace House Mural'.