The Blueprint Drawings Keith Haring
Find out more about Keith Haring’s ‘The Blueprint Drawings’ series, browse prints & editions for sale & view the works wanted by active buyers right now.
Keith Haring’s The Blueprint Drawings is regarded as the last cohesive project of the artist’s career and is perhaps one of his most iconic works. Originally produced as unique works on paper with Sumi ink, Haring displayed these works in a one-week exhibition in Manhattan in 1980 where not a single drawing was sold. However, he did find success in the sale of several blueprint copies of the original drawings and so revisited the subject in 1990, a month before his tragic death creating a portfolio of 17 screen prints of the original images.
Incorporating some of his most recognisable figurative motifs, this series of prints is rendered exclusively in black and white in Haring’s trademark linear style. Throughout The Blueprint Drawings series there are images of radiating bodies, dotted landscapes and figures, UFO’s, barking dogs and penetration that come together to form an ambiguous narrative on homosexuality, otherness, and death. The striking simplicity of the series works to confront these complex themes head-on and it is clear that Haring is unafraid to use explicit sexual imagery throughout. Additionally, like much of his other work, the prints in this series were left untitled, thus leaving the viewer with an open-ended visual language to be honestly interpreted without bias.
Why is the The Blueprint Drawings series important?
Heavily inspired by and admiring of the graffiti artists around New York at the time, Haring sought to create easily readable subjects through the highly technical process of printmaking. Successfully dissolving the boundaries between high and low art, The Blueprint Drawings are a great example of the way in which Haring worked to merge his highly recognisable icons together with a unique visual language to express complex socio-political events in a succinct manner.
Diagnosed with AIDS in 1988, the subject of HIV/AIDS epidemic, illness, homosexuality and otherness dominated the latter part of Haring’s career. Often Haring would allude to these themes through the depiction of an extra-terrestrial or otherworldly landscape, as a form of escapism but also to shed light on the empowering effects of ‘otherness’. Haring presents scenes of otherworldly chaos throughout The Blueprint Drawings, notably in his incorporation of UFOs in the sky, ancient Egyptian pyramids and radiating energy lines. Although Haring was known to be conspicuous of the technologies of his time, UFOs came to represent something more positive and empowering. Of this Haring said, ‘The saucers were zapping things with an energy ray, which would then endow whatever it zapped with this power.’
The Blueprint Drawings can therefore not be considered outside of the context of sexuality, HIV/AIDS and death. Haring’s faceless figures play into taboo ideas of anonymous sex, the barking dog represents an ignorant oppressive government and his use of dotted lines and dashes have come to represent the presence and spread of the HIV/AIDS virus.
Created through the medium of screen printing, The Blueprint series is striking in that it bursts with energy and movement through the exclusive use of black and white graphic lines. With each print framed by thick, bold lines, the series presents itself as a comic strip of sorts, thus appealing to children and adults alike, despite it’s hard-hitting themes.
How do I buy a Blueprint Drawing print?
One of the easiest and most cost-effective ways of buying work by Keith Haring is by using us to reach a seller. MyArtBroker is a curated site, meaning we feature artists that our collectors say they want. You can find the Haring works we currently offer here. You’ll need to create a free account to buy or sell with us.
How can I sell my Blueprint Drawing print?
If you're looking to sell work by Keith Haring click the link and we can help. We employ a number of techniques and practices in order to give a realistic and achievable valuation on any art listed on myartbroker.com. We analyse the demand for the work in question, take into consideration previous sales and auction valuations, we assess the current gallery valuation and monitor the current deals taking place via MyArtBroker every day. We regularly advise sellers on a price bracket for their artwork completely free of charge.