Keith Haring, NYC, 5/82

The first time I photographed Keith Haring, he came to my studio.  It was May 1981 and he was still drawing in the subways–white on black, transforming empty areas that had not yet been covered with advertising posters.  I obscured his face, with his hand, with his radiant baby t-shirt, so that the cops if saw the photo in the Soho News, they wouldn’t know what he looked like, would still have to catch him at work to arrest him.

The second time, in May of 1982, on assignment for an art magazine called Portfolio, I went to his studio in the basement of Tony Shafrazi’s Soho gallery.  He was already famous–and ubiquitous.  A 56-foot drawing mural on two pieces of paper ran along three walls.  It was incomplete but included much of Keith’s signature imagery.

In its newly reinstalled Contemporary Galleries (1980-Now), The Museum of Modern Art has hung the graphic and riveting completed drawing, which has not been seen in almost two decades.

Keith Haring, Untitled 1982

Keith Haring, Untitled 1982 (detail)

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