Haring MILAN In the 80s a group of youngsters occupied a building in via Laghetto in Milan and the walls became the canvas of the many artists and young people who left their signature. On each floor walls were painted in all sorts of styles and near the kitchen there is a room covered in blue geometric patterns reminiscent of pop artist Keith Haring’s style.

In the nineties the youngsters were evicted and the building bought by the Moratti family. For the apartment “We wanted to keep the original vocation,” said Milly Moratti, thus, they decided to rent the rooms to university students and researchers for short periods. A few years ago, during a party, the walls were vandalized and the Morattis called in restorer Giuliana Pignolo to eliminate the vandalism and restore what was underneath.

Later on Pignolo showed the room to Fiorucci. “He was very excited when he came in,” said Moratti “he recognized Haring’s hand running from a corner to cover the entire wall,” she explains pointing to the short side of the room. However, the paintings on the other wall look like the work of somebody else. “Fiorucci called it ‘a workshop exercise’. Haring was generous, he liked to share his art with other youngsters and encourage their forms of expression.” This is particularly evident on one of the two long walls, where the color does not cover the entire wall in a continuous pattern. About this latter wall painting Giulio Dalvit wrote on academic magazine ‘Concorso. Arti e lettere’, that even “if it was carried out simultaneously to the other, it differs in stylistic terms from the geometric motif.”

According to Dalvit, everything would have been painted at the end of the eighties – at a time when Haring spent time in Milan and did not limit the expression of his art to the frescos in the Fiorucci store. Other graffiti by the artist are thought to be still undiscovered and hidden from the public around the city and in Milanese houses.

Ilona Catani Scarlett

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