Art is for Everybody at the Broad Museum will focus on the artist’s life and activism.
by Elaine Velie
Los Angeles’s Broad Museum will open the city’s first Keith Haring museum exhibition in May. The show, titled Art is for Everybody, will focus on Haring’s life and activism, encompassing over 120 works from the late 1970s through 1988 and archival material including personal journals.
Although Haring is famous for his kinetic line drawings and
lighthearted comic-style figures (and the eventual mass production of his work),
he wove overtly political themes into his art throughout his career.
He created series advocating for nuclear disarmament and an end to
apartheid in South Africa, two themes that the upcoming exhibition will
examine. The show will span 10 galleries, the last of which will focus on
Haring’s activism surrounding the AIDS crisis through his posters like
“Ignorance = Fear / Silence = Death” (1989), published by Act Up, and “Stop
AIDS” (1989). Haring was diagnosed with AIDS in 1988 and died of complications
of the illness two years later at the age of 31.
Haring’s short career spanned approximately a decade, but between
1982 and 1988 he created more than 50 public works, including his famous 1986
“Crack Is Wack” mural on a Harlem handball court. He also created thousands of
“Keith Haring’s belief that art should be accessible to all is
central to the exhibition and integral to The Broad’s mission,” said the show’s
curator, Sarah Loyer, in a press release.
Art is for Everybody will also exhibit work by Haring’s
contemporaries, including Jean-Michel Basquiat, Jenny Holzer, and Andy Warhol,
and feature a backlit immersive portion displaying the artist’s sculptures and
fluorescent Day-Glo paintings and with music from Haring’s collection of
Art is for Everybody will open May 27 and run through October 8,