An early drawing of Keith Haring’s ‘Radiant Baby’ found in his childhood home is to be sold at auction.
The 1980’s American artist – who is celebrated not just for his artwork, but for his AIDS activism – once lived in the house with his family in Pennsylvania.
The image, drawn in gold pen on the blue paint of his wall, is said to have been created when he was visiting home from New York in the 1980s.
Since it was penned, the house has been sold twice, with the drawing almost painted over by the first new owners. Luckily, a last minute change of heart meant it was kept in its place next to a light switch.
The image has now been cut out of the wall – along with the light switch – and is set to be sold at auction in New Jersey by auctioneers Rago/Wrights.
The home’s current owners, Angela and Scott Garner, who bought the house in 2004, told The Guardian how they were stunned when they realised the Haring family had lived in the home.
Over the years, they’ve kept the drawing on show and say they are sad to see it go, but now believe it “belongs in a museum”.
“It tells a story, it’s part of Keith Haring’s childhood,” they said adding, “it’s encouraging to think that one day we might be able to see it in New York or Paris or Japan”.
Haring died in 1990 aged just 31 from AIDS. Prior to his death he provided support and funding to multiple AIDS organisations through his Keith Haring Foundation.
“Radiant Baby” is one of Haring’s most popular works from his Icon’s series.
His images, which were inspired by graffiti subculture of the 1980s, are still reprinted across graphics worldwide, with the colourful and buoyant characters recognised as a universal language.