Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Keith Haring on Carmine

This mural was painted in August 1987 by famed graffiti artist Keith Haring (1958–1990) on the wall that adjoins the Carmine Street Pool at the James J. Walker Park handball court. Measuring 18 feet high by 170 feet long and taking its cue from the hues of the pool’s underwater surface, the mural depicts bold, stylized motifs of fish and children as well as abstract shapes in black, white, yellow and blue. (This pool was also used in Raging Bull for the scene where Jake meets Vicki)

Keith Haring was born on May 4, 1958 in Reading and grew up in Kutztown, Pennsylvania. His first one-man exhibition was at the Pittsburgh Center for the Arts in 1978. He moved to New York City that year to study at the School of Visual Arts. In the early 1980s, the young artist first attained notoriety by using the methods of graffiti to literally make his mark on the city. Creating a style that would soon become renowned worldwide, Haring “tagged” chalk outlines of buoyant, interlocking bodies on the black poster mounts of New York City subway stations. His vocabulary of images, such as the radiant child and barking dog, soon became instantly recognizable.

Haring went on to have numerous exhibitions of his work and was represented by such well-known dealers as Tony Shafrazi, Andre Emmerich, and Leo Castelli. He was prolific in his artwork, generous in support of social causes, and went on to help choreograph music videos and produce coloring books and t-shirts for children. He opened his Pop Shop in 1986, with the proceeds helping to finance his charitable causes, such as Learning through Art and Doing Art Together, two programs that brought art to schools. He provided funds for numerous children’s organizations, supported efforts to oppose apartheid, and donated designs and funds to advance the cause of AIDS research.

16 comments:

Melanie said...

I Love his work. Nice capture Ken Mac.

Daryl said...

Haring was an incredible human being and artist ... a most excellent post, Ken Mac

marley said...

I really like this. I'm going to find some of his other work...

Lori Skoog said...

Hey Ken Mac...When I was still teaching at the High School I did a big unit on Keith Haring. Thanks for showing this to me! Love it and it is so him.

Clueless in Boston said...

Nice info about Haring. I like his style, both as an artist and as a human being.

altadenahiker said...

All new to me; thank you. I love the swimming man with the webbed feet -- Thurberesque.

Dave said...

Beautiful artwork which perfectly suits the location. - Dave

EV Grieve said...

Wow — I was unaware that this existed at the pool...(Having never been...)

B SQUARED said...

A great artist and an even greater man.

Virginia said...

I love me some Keith Haring!!!
V

Paula said...

Keith Haring is one of my favorites, a tagger who made the team.

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