keith haring ago

A major Keith Haring exhibition is coming to the AGO in Toronto

Fans of the incomparable Keith Haring will soon get a chance to explore more than 120 of the late American artist's original works (plus archival materials) in Toronto, where the Art Gallery of Ontario has been chosen to host the only Canadian stop of a "major exhibition" out of Los Angeles.

"Celebrating Keith Haring's creativity and activism, this fall the AGO welcomes a major exhibition of the late artist's vast output through more than 120 artworks and archival materials," announced the AGO in an email to members shortly before noon on Friday.

"Known for his use of vibrant colour, energetic linework and iconic characters like the barking dog and the radiant baby, Haring's artwork continues to dissolve barriers between art and life and spread joy."

Keith Haring: Art Is for Everybody is scheduled to open in November of 2023, roughly one month after the highly-anticipated KAWS exhibit makes its Canadian debut at the AGO.

keith haring ago

Haring at his last-ever exhibit in Paris before passing away at the age of 32 on Feb. 16, 1990. Photo via Wikimedia Commons.

The upcoming exhibition "aims to give a palpable sense of Keith Haring the artist and person," according to the gallery.

Organized by The Broad in L.A., the show will feature some of Haring's actual journals, which curators say were used "as a key source for reading his work."

"Beginning with early student artworks made while Haring was at the School of the Visual Arts in New York, the exhibition shows a young artist finding his voice, developing his artistic vocabulary and experimenting with mediums," reads the attraction's description.

"A thread throughout is Haring's activism, from his participation in anti-nuclear and anti-Apartheid demonstrations to his AIDS activism that is featured in the last gallery."

keith haring ago

Haring's unique and vibrant style has been described as "a universally recognized visual language of the 20th century." Photo via Yong Sok Yun.

An exact date for the exhibition has yet to be announced, nor has the specific floor or location within the gallery been shared, but Haring's enduring popularity and influence almost guarantees that it will be popular.

Born in 1958, Haring rose to prominence throughout the 1980s with his unique, graffiti-inspired pop art, some earlier pieces of which could be found throughout New York City's subway system.

The artist produced more than 50 public murals and was featured in over 100 exhibitions before dying of AIDS in 1990, leaving behind some of the most-recognizable images in modern art history.

To this day, his Keith Haring Foundation provides funding and art to non-profit organizations supporting children, as well as to organizations that perform AIDS research, care and education.

Lead photo by

Biggs


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