Over 94% of the works on view at “Haring Miami,” which opened Wednesday at the Moore Building in Miami’s Design District, have been deemed “inauthentic” by the Keith Haring Foundation.
All but 10 of the 175 works remained up at the gallery after last Friday when the foundation, which owns the intellectual property rights for the late street artist’s work, filed a law suit and secured a court order to have the rest taken down. Admission to the show, which was originally $30 at the door, was dropped until its closing on Sunday and all of the exhibition catalogues and brochures have been destroyed.
“Inauthentic,” however, doesn’t necessarily mean the work is fraudulent. It just means that the foundation had yet to authenticate it and were probably put off by the fact that someone would mount such major retrospective without their thumbs up.
“It would be impossible to mount and exhibit 200 or more works without involving the foundation,” a lawyer for the foundation said on Friday. “It became apparent that there was something wrong here.”
Though Michael Rosen, who co-produced the exhibit, claims that all the work is authentic, it didn’t exactly help his case that a disclaimer at the entrance read:
The art in this exhibition may be by the artist Keith Haring or from his circle of friends. . . the owners and publisher of this catalog and curator cannot and does not guarantee the authenticity of the works.
There have been similar controversies in the past surrounding the work of Andy Warhol who had been known to have much of his paintings made and signed by assistants, rarely even coming into contact with the final object. The Warhol Foundation closed down their Authentication Board in 2011 after much criticism that their decisions were driven by an inherent conflict of interest in keeping the supply of “authenticated” works on the market as low as possible.
The Keith Haring Foundation, owner of the copyrights of the American artist’s works, has been granted the removal of the majority of the works presented during the event “Haring Miami” that was held from 6 to 10 March 2013.
Only 10 of the 175 works presented during the exhibition organised in Florida remained accessible to visitors. In fact, according to the Foundation that manages the rights of the artist, the majority of the pieces displayed were not wrought by Keith Haring. However, Michael Rosen, the co-organiser of the event, said to the Miami Herald that only a few pieces were not authenticated, and that there was no authentication board for Haring’s works.
Michael Stout, a lawyer representing the Keith Haring Foundation, stated in the columns of the American newspaper that “it would be impossible to mount and exhibit 200 or more works without involving the foundation. It became apparent that there was something wrong here.”
In addition to the removal of the majority of the works, the organisers were forced to publish a warning message directed to their visitors: “The art in this catalog may be by the artist Keith Haring or from his circle of friends. In that this is an expansive Exhibit, some of the artwork has not been submitted or examined by the Keith Haring Foundation for authenticity. Although every effort has been made to research the authenticity of the artwork, the promoter of this show, the owners and publisher of this catalog and curator cannot and does not guarantee the authenticity of the works.”
source: artmediaagency.com, animalnewyork.com