I count myself among the vast number of New York subway riders, who during the 1980s enjoyed Keith Haring’s Subway Drawings. It didn’t occur to me that one day this body of work would form the foundation of a remarkable career that continues to resonate. Although I never owned a Keith Haring, I once met him and observed him paint a billboard, high above Market Street in San Francisco. Yet again, I had no idea I was witnessing history.
Keith Haring created a diverse body of work, but his Subway Drawings remain a personal favorite. When the Keith Haring Estate Authentication Committee set up shop, they decided against authenticating the Subway Drawings — a group which numbers approximately 5,000 images (though far fewer survived). The estate’s logic was that Haring never intended for these drawings to enter the market place. However, Keith Haring did intend for his Subway Drawings to be seen as works of art. Richard Polsky Art Authentication’s philosophy is that authentication is determined by the artist’s intent.
Authentication of Works
In addition to the Subway Drawings, we examine and research the rest of Keith Haring’s oeuvre, including the plethora of paintings and drawings he created on a myriad of surfaces — from ceramic vases to leather jackets to grommet-lined tarpaulins. Haring was as much at home painting a gigantic mural on the side of a building as he was creating an intimate design for a Swatch. Ultimately, the sheer joy that he brought to his work remains a factor in determining authentication. A genuine Keith Haring has a spirit to it that allows you to feel his presence in the room with you.
Keith Haring exhibitions, publications, and authorized merchandise continue to proliferate. Since a Keith Haring Catalogue Raisonné does not exist, a large number of his works of art remain unidentified. Many works were given away, sold without invoices, or never illustrated in exhibition catalogues. With the closing of the Keith Haring estate’s authentication committee, Richard Polsky Art Authentication emerged to help potential owners of his work determine whether their painting, drawing, sculpture, or print is genuine. We continue to monitor new developments in Keith Haring’s growing legacy, and regularly consult with Haring scholars, to provide the most professional authentication service around.