Flowers V

Flowers V
Signed Print

Keith Haring

Screenprint, 1990
Signed Print Edition of 100
H 99cm x W 130cm

Critical Review

In his choice of colour palette and simplified form, Haring creates an aesthetically pleasing print, however the Flowers series explicitly references subversive themes surrounding HIV/AIDS, sexuality, life and death. Haring uses flowers as symbols of nature’s ephemerality and the fleeting impermanence of human life. In rendering the subject to look phallic, Haring makes clear the stigma experience by homosexual men during the HIV/AIDS epidemic and the way in which their sexuality was weaponised in relation to death and the fragility of life.

Haring injects this print with an otherworldly quality in its use of saturated colours and the flower’s unusual, abstracted form. Further to this, coloured dots are used by Haring to denote the otherness of homosexuality and illness, specifically AIDS, at the time. Flowers V aptly expresses Haring’s feelings of otherness and closeness to death in 1990.