The Broad has announced a new special exhibition Keith Haring: Art is for Everybody. Organized by The Broad, this show will be the first-ever museum exhibition in Los Angeles to present Haring’s expansive body of work and will feature over 120 artworks and archival materials. Known for his use of vibrant color, energetic linework and iconic characters like the barking dog and the radiant baby, Haring’s work continues to dissolve barriers between art and life and spread joy, all while being rooted in the creative spirit and mission of his subway drawings and renowned public murals: art is for everybody.
Born in 1958 in Reading, Pennsylvania, Haring moved to New York City in 1978 to study art. He quickly became a staple within the downtown New York arts community with the likes of artists Jean-Michel Basquiat, Kenny Scharf and Andy Warhol. Haring’s output in the coming decade can be understood in the spirit of the countercultural and nightlife scenes of the 1980s, often organizing exhibitions at the Club 57 nightclub and other alternative venues. This sensibility is palpable in his subway drawings–of which he created over 5,000 throughout his career–where his visionary use of line could be experimented with in quick movements, available to the wide public who took the New York subway. Eli and Edythe Broad, who first began to collect contemporary art deeply in the 1980s, were drawn to the social and political nature of Haring’s work early on, first entering the collection in 1982. Forty years later his legacy continues to garner international acclaim and recognition.
Keith Haring’s global influence and enduring impact are profound, and The Broad is thrilled to bring our audience in Los Angeles this sweeping exhibition of his work.
It is our distinct pleasure to share a deep and varied representation of his emblematic visual language and to highlight the prolific ways he spoke through his art and activism about social issues while celebrating joy, solidarity, community and hope.said Joanne Heyler, Founding Director of The Broad.
Keith Haring: Art is for Everybody will explore both his artistic practice and life, with much of the source material for the exhibition coming from his personal journals. Works presented span from the late-1970s when he was a student at the School of Visual Arts in New York up until 1988, just two years before the artist died from AIDS-related illness at the age of 31. Haring’s participation in nuclear disarmament and anti-Apartheid movements are featured prominently in the show, as well as works that take on complex issues that remain crucial today from environmentalism, capitalism, and the proliferation of new technologies to religion, sexuality, and race. In the last gallery, significant works from the late 1980s will be accompanied by framed posters illustrating the artist’s activism during the HIV/AIDS crisis. The exhibition will be accompanied by a monograph catalog published by the museum in collaboration with DelMonico Books and will feature essays by The Broad’s Curator and Exhibitions Manager Sarah Loyer, Kimberly Drew and Tom Finkelpearl; a roundtable conversation with Patti Astor, Kenny Scharf, and Kermit Oswald; and reflections by George Condo, Ann Magnuson, Bill T Jones, Julia Gruen and Gil Vazquez.
Keith Haring’s belief that art should be accessible to all is central to the exhibition and integral to The Broad’s mission.
With this exhibition, our audience will have the opportunity to dive deep into Haring’s work, both as an artist and as an innovator who completely shifted the landscape of contemporary art to this day.said Sarah Loyer, Curator and Exhibitions Manager.
Divided into ten galleries in total, the expansive exhibition will feature the breadth of mediums Haring worked within, including video, sculpture, drawing, painting, and graphic works, as well as representations from the artist’s enormous output of public projects, from the subway drawings to his public murals. Major works held in the Broad collection such as Untitled, 1984 and Red Room, 1988 will be on view in addition to key loans from many institutional and private collections, including art, ephemera and documentation provided by the Keith Haring Foundation in New York, established by the artist in 1989. The show will feature immersive elements, such as a gallery lit by blacklight soundtracked by playlists created by the artist himself. Additionally, the Shop at The Broad will be transformed, taking inspiration from Haring’s artistic retail space The Pop Shop, which first opened in 1986 in the SoHo neighborhood of New York. Much like its original format, The Broad will use this component of the exhibition to make Haring’s line accessible to the widest possible audience.
“Much like the work of Keith Haring, his idea that Art Is for Everybody is as profound in its simplicity as it is in its complexity. We invite everyone to The Broad museum for a closer look at why his practice, activism, courage, and accessibility continue to resonate, perhaps now more than ever,”said Gil Vazquez, Executive Director of the Keith Haring Foundation
Additionally on view for free in The Broad’s third-floor galleries throughout the exhibition will be works by contemporaries of Haring including Jean-Michel Basquiat, George Condo, Jenny Holzer, Kenny Scharf, and Andy Warhol, among others.
Programs tied to the exhibition will kick off June 1, 2023, with a talk as part of The Broad’s The Un-Private Collection conversation series with legendary choreographer Bill T. Jones, Haring’s frequent collaborator, and author Brad Gooch. A full slate of further programming for the exhibition, including music, talks and commissioned performance will be announced in the coming months.
Keith Haring: Art is for Everybody, Opening May 27, 2023, through to October 8th 2023 The Broad. Tickets to the exhibition will be made available in Spring 2023 at thebroad.org.