Keith Haring - Evening & Day Editions London Tuesday, June 14, 2022 | Phillips

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  • 'I am intrigued with the shapes people choose as their symbols to create a language. There is within all forms a basic structure, an indication of the entire object with a minimum of lines that becomes a symbol. This is common to all languages, all people, all times.'
    —Keith Haring

    First appearing in a subway drawing series from 1980-85, the barking dog is one of Keith Haring’s most well-known subjects. Both dogs and dog-human hybrids feature prominently in his works. Interpreted as a universal symbol of resistance and protection, barking to call out social injustice, the dog warns viewers of the abuses of power that pervade everyday life in America and beyond.


    Keith Haring photographed with one of his paintings in April 1984. Image: © Jack Mitchell/Getty Images
    Keith Haring photographed with one of his paintings in April 1984. Image: © Jack Mitchell/Getty Images

    Haring’s use of canine imagery reflects the politically charged status of both dogs and gay men in New York at the time. In the 1970’s public anxiety about the number of dogs in the city exploded. Fueled by racism and gentrification, public health campaigns pushed for dog owners to clean up after their pets, and ‘put children before dogs’. The subtext of the campaigns was not lost on the gay community, as it echoed the homophobic public discourse around gay sex, becoming increasingly visible as liberation movements grew in power. Haring was not alone in using the dog as an emblem of queer resistance, and was joined in appropriating this symbolism by David Wojnarowicz, Jenny Holzer, and Martin Wong. Each artist used the dog as subject to challenge the surrounding narrative of fear and contagion. Haring’s Blueprint Drawings from 1990, defy this environment of oppression: a dog is worshipped by a chanting crowd after being ‘beamed’ by a spaceship. Haring mocks the hypocritical nature of larger society, who flippantly reject the unknown. Within this context, Haring’s Dog not only reflects the need for voices against injustice but highlights a period of creative revolution against the dehumanization of gay desire.


    Keith Haring, The Blueprint Drawings: one plate, 1990. Artwork: © The Keith Haring Foundation
    Keith Haring, The Blueprint Drawings: one plate, 1990. Artwork: © The Keith Haring Foundation
    • Provenance

      Schellmann Art, Munich
      Private Collection, Munich

    • Literature

      Klaus Littman, pp. 48-49
      Jörg Schellmann, ed., Forty Are Better Than One, Munich/New York, 2009, pp. 142-143

    • Artist Biography

      Keith Haring

      American • 1958 - 1990

      Haring's art and life typified youthful exuberance and fearlessness. While seemingly playful and transparent, Haring dealt with weighty subjects such as death, sex and war, enabling subtle and multiple interpretations. 

      Throughout his tragically brief career, Haring refined a visual language of symbols, which he called icons, the origins of which began with his trademark linear style scrawled in white chalk on the black unused advertising spaces in subway stations. Haring developed and disseminated these icons far and wide, in his vibrant and dynamic style, from public murals and paintings to t-shirts and Swatch watches. His art bridged high and low, erasing the distinctions between rarefied art, political activism and popular culture. 

      View More Works


Dog (L. 48-49)

Lithograph, on BFK Rives paper, with full margins.
I. 110 x 83 cm (43 1/4 x 32 5/8 in.)
S. 116.4 x 89.8 cm (45 7/8 x 35 3/8 in.)

Signed and dated in red pencil, a proof aside the edition of 40 (there were also 10 artist's proofs in Roman numerals), published by Edition Schellmann, Munich and New York, unframed.

Full Cataloguing

£40,000 - 60,000 

Sold for £107,100

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Evening & Day Editions

London Auction 14-15 June 2022