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Me and Street Art

Keith Haring Foundation, Stedelijk Museum, Blikopeners Summer School

Keith Haring was an American artist and social activist whose work responded to the New York City street culture of the 1980's by expressing concepts of birth, death, sexuality and war. His work was often political, He was born on the 4th of May (1958 Reading, Pennsylvania) and died on the 16th of February (1990 New York City, New York). He is known for moving pop-art into the graffiti art domain and graffiti art influence on the pop-art.

My first impressions of his work were positive, I found his work a bit strange and different but I liked it. When I see other artworks before Keith’s, they focus on aesthetics, but when I see Keith - it did not focus on aesthetics but still looked good and coordinated.

My experience with Keith Haring was an interesting one. I would like to tell you how I learned about him in the first place.

I heard about this opportunity from Anna, the founder of Street Art Museum Amsterdam, who I met through my famlily. My cousine Celeste was regularly participating in SAMA's activities and thought it would be a good idea for Anna to advise on how I could get into the artworld. Anna immediately dragged me to the Good Neighbours market on the Slotermeer lake and made me talk to MOSTE (visiting artist from Mexico), who was giving a workshop.

After the workshop, she contacted me explaining about the one week summer school, which was organized by Stedelijk Museum, and is called the "Keith Haring Foundation Summer School". So I have applied because I was very much into art and I thought that I might learn some art tips and/or meet people like me, who I could befriend, which I did.

The Keith haring summer school was different than I had expected but in a good way. I learned lots and lots about graffiti and street art, I got to meet and learn from a lot of street artist - Mick LaRock, Laser 3.14, TeamBlazin, Earwarm, MOSTE, Bas the Fashion Designer, etc. and learned about Keith Haring, of course. The whole experience over all was amazing and i would do it again, if i could. I also learned about Blikopeners, a chance to follow up working with Stedelijk young creatives. Everyone was very open minded, artistic, friendly and inspiring. It was lots of fun. The workshops, learning about others experience with Keith, creating your own things such as jackets with a painting on them, even getting lost on the first day was a highlight for me.

SAMA (Street Art Museum Amsterdam)

I haven't worked for SAMA long but I've been observing for a while and I've noticed that a lot of effort and hard work has to be put in order for an event/Workshop to be arranged and to succeed. It's not just something simple, it's actually a mental and physical work out to organize one, on the other hand it's a bit chill too. Once an event is over it's a nice feeling that everything has worked out and you feel refreshed.

Another thing I like about SAMA is that the museum is outside! Our HQ (physical base) is only two small rooms where we work, eat, talk, think, read, listen to music, give workshops, receive visitors and draw, a lot.

But all of the main collection artworks are out there, on the streets of Slotermeer, and a new area I've never been before - Geuzenveld, which is also just 5 minutes away from our main square - Plein 40-45. Certainly interesting, and beneficial if you are curious what goes on in our hood. You get to see amazing art, while also working out!

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