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Statue Of Liberty

Statue Of Liberty
Signed Print

Keith Haring

Screenprint, 1986
Signed Print Edition of 100
H 91cm x W 66cm

Critical Review

The print was developed from a design for a large banner titled CityKids Speak on Liberty made in 1986 in conjunction with The CityKids Foundation on the occasion of the bicentennial of the statue’s completion. Perhaps the defining symbol of the United States, ‘Liberty Enlightening the World’ (as the statue is officially titled) is here made more playful than patriotic, her bright torch adorned with Haring’s signature energy lines, her face turned down to look over the joyful dancers below.

Printed in four layers of colour – black, red, yellow and green – the work shows Haring’s mastery of screen printing as a medium. Though he had experimented with print techniques such as lithography in the late 70s and 80s it wasn’t until 1983 that Haring began making screen prints. Adopted from the world of commercial printing, this method offered a way of creating multiple images with vivid colours and little variation between prints. This move was undoubtedly due in part to the medium being popularised by Andy Warhol. It soon became evident that the energy and curiosity Haring demonstrated for painting translated perfectly into printmaking and he began to work with publishers across the US, Switzerland, Japan, Germany, France, Denmark and Holland, producing ever more inventive and daring work. Though many of his prints were made in editions of 100 or more, there is an element of precision in every single one that shows the level of care with which he supervised the process.

By the time of his death just four years after this work was made, Haring had produced so many prints that the exact number has become impossible to count. There are many unsigned editions on the market, though these tend only to be considered valuable if approved by the Keith Haring Foundation. Today his prints are frequently among the most sought after multiples on the market.