Timeline

1960
Steve Alan Kaufman was born in 1960 in the Bronx, New York.
1968
Sponsored by a Jewish temple in the Bronx, Steve Kaufman creates Holocaust paintings that were later donated to the Museum of Jewish Heritage in Brooklyn.
1972
Works for Macy’s, painting dog and cat faces on pet rocks.
1975
Steve Kaufman participates in group graffiti show at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City.
1978–1981
Enrolls in the School of Visual Arts. Meets Andy Warhol and becomes his assistant at The Factory.
1978–1981
Designs theme parties at Studio 54, The Mud Club, Underground, and Magique. Sells his art to Calvin Klein and Steve Rubell. Meets Keith Haring at School of Visual Arts (SVA) show.
1978–1981
Participates in group show at Club 57 with Haring.
1982
Creates graphics for NBC’s "Saturday Night Live." Graduates from School of Visual Arts (SVA) with a BFA.
1982
Holds art shows at the Air Gallery in London, White Freud and Fiorucci store window in NYC.
1983–1985
Arrested with AIDS demonstrators for chain-locking New York City’s Mayor Ed Koch in his office.
1983–1985
Exhibits Sex, Rock & Roll at the Off-Centre Gallery in London.
1986–1988
Forms SAK Studio.
1986–1988
Begins campaign for AIDS awareness with art shows featuring paintings of Trojan condom wrappers measuring 5 feet by 5 feet. Condom art exhibit shown at Main Fine Art, Edinburgh College of Art, Zanzibar Club and the Smith Gallery.
1989–1990
Steve Kaufman opens Art Studio and hires New York City homeless.
1989–1990
Paints portraits of three homeless people for Transportation Display, Inc. Portraits are shown in 46 cities on bus billboards, helping raise $4.72 million to benefit the homeless.
1989–1990
Completes unfinished portraits for Andy Warhol clients.
1989–1990
Trojan Condoms/Carter Wallace sponsors 5,000 AIDS awareness buttons to be given away in Greenwich Village and at an art auction for The American Foundation for AIDS Research (amfAR). Paints first Racial Harmony Mural in Harlem to bring awareness to inner city problems.
1989–1990
Holds show at The White Gallery, where all art was covered in black cloth in memory of those who died of AIDS. This show developed the concept for the “Day Without Art” tribute. Show held at Loft Gallery in Tokyo, Japan.
1991–1992
Completes 55 Racial Harmony Murals in the New York City area with Malcolm X images.
1991–1992
Appears on Fox TV, MTV and various radio stations to speak out on racial harmony.
1991–1992
Accepts award as Underground Artist of the Year. Paints Mickey Mantle’s portrait for Mantle’s Restaurant.
1991–1992
Paints Joe Frazier’s portrait to raise money for Police Athletic League.
1991–1992
Creates AIDS Memorial in New York City. Drapes red fabric over the letter “D” on the Hollywood Sign in remembrance of everyone who has died of AIDS.
1993–1994
Steve Kaufman moves his Art Studio to Los Angeles, California.
1993–1994
He starts a new style called “Comic Book Pop Art,” and uses original paintings of Superheroes -- Superman, Batman, Spider Man, to name a few -- as the icons.
1993–1994
Hires more than 100 Los Angeles ex-gang kids from prison to assist him in the studio.
1995
Published works for Martin Lawrence Limited Editions. Hand paints limited editions, giving new meaning to hand-embellishment. Creates limited editions of Beethoven, which sold out, and Marilyn Monroe, breaking all sales records for a new artist. Creates portraits of Muhammad Ali and John Travolta, who autographed their editions.
1995
Works with Los Angeles “South Central” parole officers
1995
Hires more than 200 kids from prison to work in the studio
1995
Receives award from Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan
1995
Increases charity work to include 100 different charities
1996
Steve Kaufman contacts the Sinatra Family about painting Frank Sinatra’s portrait.
1996
Campbell’s asks Steve to paint a limited edition to mark Campbell’s Soup’s 100th Anniversary.
1996
Paints Muhammad Ali’s face on 500 boxing gloves, demonstrating that art doesn't have to be on canvas.
1996
By now, 325 kids have worked for the Art Studio and 85 percent have gone on to a better way of life.
1996
Paints two Harley-Davidson motorcycles: one a Campbell’s Soup theme and the other a Cohiba Cigar theme.
1996
Kaufman pays homage to the great master composers Beethoven and Mozart by creating an edition of hand painted, limited edition, oil on canvas silkscreens that are critically acclaimed in the art world.
1997–1998
Tina Sinatra features Kaufman’s portraits of Frank Sinatra on Larry King’s CNN show.
1997–1998
Holds art shows in Japan and Amsterdam.
1997–1998
Has boxing exhibition versus Don Diego, a European boxing champion.
1997–1998
Paints a Harley-Davidson motorcycle for the Los Angeles Dodgers baseball team.
1997–1998
By now, Steve Kaufman has hired 546 ex-gang kids and homeless, and supported more than 175 charities.
1999–2000
Steve Kaufman suffers a cardiac episode and a motorcycle accident.
2000
Releases Sinatra’s Rat Pack and Mug Shot, Al Pacino as The Godfather and Scarface, New York City’s radio "shock jock" icon Howard Stern, Barbie, and two new Marilyn Monroe editions. Releases Van Gogh and Picasso in a new style, 100 percent hand-painted edition, which gives new meaning to the hand-embellishment process.
2000
Steve Kaufman meets art enthusiast Diana Vachier. The two work together on promotions, museum placements, and sales.
2001
Steve Kaufman continues to support more than 170 charities each year, hiring 759 ex-gang kids to date to work in his studio.
2001
He creates two new styles called “Portrait Collage” and “Museum Art,” thus becoming his 14th and 15th distinct style, comparable in number only to Picasso’s many different styles.
2002
Donates Princess Diana portrait to Elton John AIDS Foundation.
2002
Starts new program placing paintings of his icon images in public places around the country for all to enjoy. Includes a Muhammad Ali in Brooklyn’s famous Gleason’s Boxing Gym, a Sinatra portrait to Hofstra University, a Marilyn to the Foundation Fighting Blindness and gifted a painting to David Letterman to inspire heart recovery.
2002
Holds exhibitions in New York, Las Vegas and Maui.
2003
Steve Kaufman suffers a major stroke following Art Expo New York.
2003
Exhibition in Las Vegas, hosted by Robin Leach
2003
Honored by Mayor Oscar Goodman, officially declaring May 21, 2003, Steve Kaufman Day in Las Vegas.
2003
Honored by Nevada Senator John Ensign and Nevada Governor Kenny Guinn for his philanthropic donations over the years.
2003
In December, meets President Bill Clinton at his office in Harlem for a holiday party for artists whose art is displayed in Clinton's private office collection.
2003
Donates art to and participates in Love Ride with Jay Leno and Peter Fonda for the 10th straight year
2004
Creates and releases President Clinton’s portrait
2004
Donates many suites and all proceeds from his sales to “Give Kids A Break.”
2004
Feeling ill again, Steve Kaufman curtails his painting and exhibition schedule
2005
Steve Kaufman and Diana Vachier establish and incorporate American Pop Art, Inc., a subdivision of Steve Kaufman Art Studio that continues today to be run by Diana Vachier
2005
Introduces “Uniques,” which are multiple originals of his most famous Icons: Marilyn, The Rat Pack, Frank Sinatra, The Beatles, Einstein, and others.
2005
Holds exhibitions in New York, Las Vegas, Philadelphia and Maui.
2005
Donates 100% of his proceeds from a $100,000 gallery sale to “Give Kids A Break.”
2005
Pope John Paul II accepts a painting of himself to hang in his private office at The Vatican.
2005
Paints portraits of Lance Armstrong that are displayed in galleries during Tour de France.
2005
Creates painting and limited edition to raise money for victims of Hurricane Katrina.
2005
Creates paintings of Mercedes SLR McLaren to honor the 100th anniversary of Mercedes-Benz.
2006
Feeling healthier, Steve Kaufman drastically increases his exhibition schedule with New York, Las Vegas, Washington, DC; Vail, Beaver Creek, Aspen, Denver, Santa Fe, Rancho Mirage, Newport Beach, Laguna Beach, Key West and Maui.
2006
Introduces “Mini-Heart Paintings” as gifts to all kids who attend his shows, and free framed plates for all those who purchase.
2006
Returns to creating one-of-a-kind originals to be sold exclusively at shows.
2006
Visits Ellis Island as guest of Lee Iacocca for New York Society Event
2006
Meets Ernie Anastos, creates his portrait and presents them on the set of Fox News, NY.
2007
Steve Kaufman continues his exhibition schedule with New York, Washington, DC; Vail, Beaver Creek, Aspen, Denver, Rancho Mirage, Maui, Toronto and Europe.
2007
He gives free Peace Sign paintings to all the kids who attend his shows, and free sculptures to those who purchase.
2007
Creates portraits for David Caruso of CSI: Miami fame, which he autographs at the studio. He is interviewed on TV in Denver, Aspen and Vail to discuss not only his art, but more importantly, his philanthropy.
2007
He continues to sell out uniques of his most famous icons including: The Rat Pack, Frank Sinatra, Las Vegas, Marilyn, The Beatles, James Dean, Einstein, John Lennon and $100 Bills, to name a few.
2007
He continues to hire more gang kids for the studio. This opportunity represents a second chance in life for each of these kids, who now exceed 1,950 in number.
2007
Golden Boy Promotions commissions paintings to commemorate the De La Hoya/Mayweather Championship Fight.
2007
Steve Kaufman creates a series of “Uniques,” original paintings depicting Red Bull, in recognition of the most popular energy drink in the world.
2008
Steve Kaufman's work is displayed at the Eighth Annual Exhibition at Centaur Art Galleries in Las Vegas, alongside Neiman’s, Rockwell’s, Picasso’s, Chagall’s, and Dali’s.
2008
He unveils and sells new stained glass uniques of The Las Vegas Sign, Homage To Lichtenstein, and Homage to Picasso.
2008
Other exhibitions include New York, Denver, Washington, DC; Vail, Beaver Creek, La Jolla, Laguna Beach and Newport Beach. NYC Art Expo.
2008
The Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority sets up a display of Kaufman art, seen by two million people a year.
2008
Caesars Palace asks Steve to paint portraits of Cher, Bette Midler and Elton John. Steve unveils his stained glass art at a July 4th show in Las Vegas.
2008
Steve creates a new painting art style with his Coca-Cola and Apple iPod campaigns.
2009
Steve Kaufman participates in a six-day art exhibit at Stanfield Gallery After Hours at Sundance, where 100 kids help paint the gallery floor with a pop art theme. Four hundred kids receive 8 x 8 paintings as free gifts. The entire event is captured for an independent film for Sundance 2010.
2009
Exhibit for art gallery in Tysons Corner, Virginia. Dylan candy painting edition. For the Academy Awards, Steve Kaufman creates paintings based on the films The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, Frost/Nixon, Milk, The Reader, and Slumdog Millionaire.
2009
He suffers his second major stroke:
2010
Steve Kaufman suffers a fatal heart attack in Vail, Colorado on February 12, 2010, as he prepared for an art show.
2012
ong Beach woman launched this week a virtual art gallery in memory of the late Steve Alan Kaufman
2012
American Pop Art, Inc. Celebrates Historic Art Exhibit of Andy Warhol and Friends
2012
Pop Art by Steve Kaufman at Mihal Gallery, Hotel Múza in Slovakia
2012
Pop Art by Steve Kaufman Now at Mihal Gallery, Hotel Múza in Slovakia
2012
Pop Art’s Finest, Steve Kaufman Works at the Museum of Passion in Valladolid, Spain
2012
Steve Kaufman “Rat Pack Painting Showcased as Popular Production Premieres in Italy
2013
“Pop Art In Trieste: Steve Kaufman, the Former Assistant to Andy Warhol,”
2013
“Icons of Pop Art, Then and Now”
2013
Steve Kaufman Featured in “Pure Pop Art,” an Exhibition of the World’s Greatest Pop Artists at the Marcos Valcárcel Cultural Center in Galicia, Spain
2013
Steve Kaufman “The Prince of Pop Art” Grand Exhibition in Trieste, Italy
2013
“Icons of Pop Art Then and Now” at the House of Ferrari Museum in Modena, Italy
Steve Kaufman Paintings Featured on Hit TV Show “The Practice”
Steve Kaufman Paintings a Frequent Feature on The History Channel’s “Pawn Stars”