The Art of Keith Haring
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Level: Undergraduate
Division: The New School for Public Engagement
School: Bachelor's Program for Adults and Transfer Students
Department: Humanities
Course Number: NARH 3487
Course Format: Seminar
Location: NYC campus
Permission Required: No
  • Art History, Theory & Criticism
  • Gender and Sexuality Studies
  • Visual Culture
This class explores the world of Keith Haring, one of the most prolific artists of the 1980s. Inspired by Haring’s energetic engagement with New York City and his dynamic use of line, the course will take students on a journey through the exciting realms of hip hop, downtown performance art and queer nightlife. Andy Warhol, Brion Gysin, Grace Jones, Madonna, and Fab Five Freddy represent just a few of the inspirational figures we will study. Situating Haring in an historical context, we will examine the aesthetic practices and countercultural legacies that were vital to Haring’s development as an artist. In addition, students will think through multiple frameworks for understanding Haring’s art—including Primitivism and Pop—and critically address the formal aspects of his work. This interdisciplinary course moves beyond a traditional art history approach to its subject and follows Haring’s line across time and surfaces. We will focus on the various ways that Haring’s art performs in different contexts and investigate the politics of his art, particularly in regards to Haring’s negotiations with race and sexuality.
Course Open to: Degree Students