Keith Haring In the Subway 1980 - 1985
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Haring Subway
Subway Drawings Keith in the Subway
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Photographer, Ivan Dalla Tana

Keith Haring's work appeals to us on several levels. First, of course, is the goofy cheerfulness that strikes immediately and, through repetition, becomes a leitmotif that sees us through our days - a tuneful celebration of urban commonality. When we spot the Radiant Baby or Barking Dog, we not only have seen them before and know we will see them again, soon we also know that tens of thousands of our fellows will see them as well.

Keith Haring has developed his own language, which speaks to us with immediacy in a deeply preverbal sense. Each term in this language can be read as subject, verb, or object: the Dog Barks the Spacecraft or the Spacecraft Zaps the Praying Man. In much the same way as Chinese or Egyptian languages are written pictographically, Keith Haring's world is made up of symbols that speak urgently to us, both alone and in interchangeable configurations. And as the pictographs or hieroglyphs communicate visually, soundlessly, so too are Haring's symbols swathed in silence. An eerie quietude surrounds all his work, heightening and animating the dramas they depict.

-- from the Intoduction to Art in Transit
     by Henry Geldzahler
| Complete essay.

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