Keith was born to Joan and Allen Haring on May 4, 1958. He grew up in Kutztown, Pennsylvania, the oldest of four siblings. His artistic leanings were evident from a very early age. Through books and museum visits he began to develop an awareness of modern art. After high school, Keith enrolled in the Ivy School of Professional Art in Pittsburgh.
In 1976, Keith hitchhiked cross-country, stopping along the way to look at other art programs. When he returned to Pittsburgh later that year, he sat in on classes at the University of Pittsburgh, and eventually became involved with the Pittsburgh Arts and Crafts Center, where he had his first important show.
Keith Haring's work was flamboyant and reflected the garish colours of Eighties fashions. There is a lot of energy in his paintings and they have the power both to amuse and provoke. Towards the end of Haring's life, he devoted himself to The Keith Haring Foundation, conveying the dangers of AIDS, which claimed another victim in the artist himself in 1990.
"Art should be something that liberates the soul, provokesthe imagination and encourages people to go further." – Keith Haring