Keith Haring: Into 2025

2024/3/27|

We will hold an exhibition titled “Keith Haring: Into 2025, where we will trace Keith Haring’s efforts advocating against war and nuclear weapons as we approach the 80th year since the end of the war, and reinterpret the messages of “peace” and “freedom” embedded in his works from a contemporary perspective.

Keith Haring (1958-1990), a representative artist of 1980s American art, was known for his bright and lively style, yet beneath his works lay a sharp insight into society. Haring depicted society at times humorously, at times acerbically, continuously sending messages of peace and freedom.

The subtitle of this exhibition is inspired by words Haring wrote in his diary during his visit to the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum: “Who could ever want this to happen again? To anyone?” Drawing inspiration from this, the exhibition reflects on the atomic bomb that turned cities into ashes in an instant. With still 12,000 nuclear warheads existing in the world and wars persisting incessantly, next year marks the 80th anniversary since the end of World War II. The purpose of this exhibition is to confront the challenges facing the world through Haring’s perspective and contemplate the meaning of “peace” and “freedom” in the modern context.

 

Highlights of the Exhibition:

1. Collection of Works Advocating Against War and Nuclear Weapons

During the intensified Cold War of the 1980s, the world possessed an unprecedented number of nuclear weapons. Using art as a medium, Haring conveyed messages of anti-war and anti-nuclear sentiments to society through various means. From the “Poster for Nuclear Disarmament” (1982), created for what is considered the largest anti-nuclear demonstration in history held in New York, to the documentary photographs of the mural he painted on the Berlin Wall (1986) commissioned by the Checkpoint Charlie Museum, and the print series “Apocalypse” (1988), where Haring depicted a chaotic world alongside ten poems by William S. Burroughs (1914-1997), one can glimpse the fear of a young individual exposed to the threat of nuclear weapons. Simultaneously, these works reveal the artist’s endeavor to resist anxiety and despair, offering warnings for the future.

2. Messages of Peace and Freedom

The themes of “peace” and “freedom” that Haring consistently sought throughout his life are deeply reflected in American history and the global situation of the 1980s. In this exhibition, we contemplate the messages embedded in his works, such as “Peace I-IV,” “My Town,” and “Sound Tree,” which he created in collaboration with 500 children upon his invitation to the opening of the Parthenon Tama, a cultural complex in Tama City, Tokyo, in 1987. Despite nearly four decades passing since their creation, we reflect on the significance of these pieces and the messages they convey, especially for children, in today’s world.

3. Keith Haring and Hiroshima

In 1988, prompted by his involvement in designing the main image for the charity concert “HIROSHIMA ’88,” aimed at raising funds for the construction of a home for atomic bomb survivors, Haring visited Hiroshima. During his visit, he toured the Atomic Bomb Dome and the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, witnessing the horrors of war firsthand. Inspired to express his thoughts on peace, Haring offered to create a mural. However, this project never came to fruition. This exhibition traces the circumstances surrounding Haring’s visit to Hiroshima, shedding light on his footsteps during that time, which have been overlooked in the past.

 

Exhibition title Keith Haring: Into 2025
Term June 1, 2024 – May 18, 2025
Venue Nakamura Keith Haring Collection 10249-7 Kobuchizawa, Hokuto, Yamanashi 4080044 JAPAN 
Opening hours 9:00-17:00(Last admission 4:30PM)
Closed
  • Open every day except during winter closure: February 3 – 16, 2025.*Closed during installation
Admission fee
  • Admission fee: Adult ¥1,500 / Student (Over 16 Years Old) ¥800 / Visitors with disabilities ¥600 / Under 15 Years Old Free*Please show your ID for discount.
Organized by Nakamura Keith Haring Collection
Supported by U.S. Embassy, Tokyo, Yamanashi Prefecture, Yamanashi Prefectural Board of Education, Hokuto City, Hokuto City Board of Education
Special Thanks to  the Keith Haring Foundation, CityKids Foundation, CMIC Holdings Co., Ltd.

 

OPEN