Thank you to John from the Tate Liverpool for a really inspiring tour of the Keith Haring Exhibition. It was the best tour we have ever had.  Keith Haring’s art is amazing and thought provoking. 

The exhibition itself is beautiful as the art is so colourful and eye catching, it was the tour from John that brought the whole thing to life for us, we could have listened to John talk so passionately about Keith’s life, politics and art all day. 

Jody said “There’s lots of spaceships in his pictures and I wonder what he means by them and John is really enthusiastic about the art.” 

John told us how Keith was inspired by graffiti, hip hop culture, pop art and as there was no social media people went clubbing and it was the underground clubbing scene where Keith met lots of like minded people.   Haring’s did chalk drawings on the subway on blank advertisement spaces which got people’s attention. People began to take these down and keep them – so he stopped doing them as he liked the idea of them being temporary. Luckily people did take them and we got to see them at Tate Liverpool.  Haring designed record covers, clothes, directed a music video for Grace Jones and worked with other artists like Andy Warhol and so much more.  John told us that when Madonna married Sean Penn it was Keith Haring who got the invite and Andy Warhol went as his plus one!  That’s when he knew he was truly famous! 

1980’s America was largely homophobic and when the HIV and AIDs epidemic began there was no research being done to help people who had the disease.  Haring campaigned and marched for people to have equal rights and later in life for people to practise safe sex.  His art challenged the issues of the time – politics, homophobia, drug addiction. 

John read an excerpt from Kay – Keith’s sister about his final days before he died that was really moving. 

It was a really amazing afternoon and we wouldn’t have learned as much if we hadn’t had John to guide us around the course of Keith’s life. 

Thank you to John and the Liverpool Tate for such a wonderful afternoon.

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