NEW YORK—It’s a challenge to decide which is more intriguing: the nearly 50-foot-long black-and-white mural or the personal sketchbooks filled with intricate drawings. “Keith Haring: 1978-1982” is a fascinating experience presented in three main galleries. Billed as the first large-scale exhibition to explore the early years of Keith Haring‘s career, the show at the Brooklyn Museum includes 155 works on paper, and more than 150 archival objects such as exhibition flyers, rarely seen videos, journals and sketchbooks, and a series of 20 Polaroid self-portraits.
The exhibit documents the artist’s arrival in New York (from his native Western Pennsylvania), his public art on city streets and subway platforms, and his curatorial role in many group exhibitions and performances for which he often created hand-written and hand-drawn flyers that he photocopied and distributed. Viewing the extensive collection, it is hard to believe that all the work was produced in a short, five-year span, and that Haring was only 31 when he died.
The exhibit is on view at the Brooklyn Museum from March 16 to July 8, 2012.
All photos by Arts Observer