"Ignorance = Fear, Silence = Death," 1989
poster for Act Up, 24" x 43"
Courtesy of the estate of Keith Haring
About the artist: Haring, a social activist whose artwork played a vital role in the street culture of New York City in the 1980s, died of AIDS complications in 1990. Inspired by graffiti art, Haring shot to fame as a pop artist with his iconic "Radiant Baby" image, which appeared in many of his works throughout his life. Haring, a gay man who was actively involved with the activist group ACT UP, created this image as a poster for the international organization.
Why we chose this piece: We are impressed by Haring's ability to create art that is simultaneously simple and nuanced and because his bold imagery resonates so deeply with all who view it -- from art aficionados to the AIDS activists who took to the streets in the 1980s and 1990s.