31 May until 5 November 2017
Keith Haring

Keith Haring, born in Pennsylvania in 1958, moves to New York at the age of twenty and immediately falls under the spell of the lively street-art scene. At this point, Pop Art has already been around for some time. Graffiti shapes the face of the city. It takes Keith Haring only a few years to find his artistic path. He develops an unmistakable style that, with its bold lines and singular figures, has close ties to both comics and street art. Less than a decade as a successful artist is granted to him—a decade he nevertheless fills to the brim with an astonishing energy that can still be felt today. In contrast to many of his contemporaries, Haring understands himself as a political artist for his entire life, one who wants to educate others and reach a wider audience with his art. The exhibition Keith Haring: Posters brings together over 100 posters from the collection of the Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe (MKG), Hamburg. It shows Haring’s stylistic development through his exhibition posters; its broader collection of works presents the artist’s wide topical range, with his repeated engagement in support of human rights, tolerance, education, and AIDS awareness. Numerous smaller objects and marketing products that Haring sold in his Pop Shop in New York City act as complements to the exhibition’s posters. Thanks to Hamburg collector Claus von der Osten, who has gifted these works to the MKG, the selection of objects on show is of unparalleled completeness. The exhibition is made possible by funding from the Ernst August Bester Stiftung and the Hans Brökel Stiftung für Wissenschaft und Kultur.

Ill.: Keith Haring, Ignorance = Fear, Silence = Death, Fight Aids Act Up, New York, 1989, © Keith Haring Foundation