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Damien Hirst

Damien Hirst, Study After Delacroix (the Orphan Girl in the Cemetery), 1981 Pencil on paper, 13 ⅜ × 11 inches (34 × 28 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Study After Delacroix (the Orphan Girl in the Cemetery), 1981

Pencil on paper, 13 ⅜ × 11 inches (34 × 28 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Expanded from Small Red Wheel, 1985 Painted wood, metal, fabric, plastic, and wallpaper construction, 16 × 10 × 4 inches (40.6 × 25.4 × 10.2 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Expanded from Small Red Wheel, 1985

Painted wood, metal, fabric, plastic, and wallpaper construction, 16 × 10 × 4 inches (40.6 × 25.4 × 10.2 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living, 1991 Glass, steel, formaldehyde solution, and tiger shark, 84 × 204 × 84 inches (211 × 518 × 211 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living, 1991

Glass, steel, formaldehyde solution, and tiger shark, 84 × 204 × 84 inches (211 × 518 × 211 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, 14 Sausages, 1993 Acrylic, silicone, monofilament, sausages, and formaldehyde solution, 25 ¼ × 18 ¾ × 3 ¾ inches (64 × 47.5 × 9.5 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, 14 Sausages, 1993

Acrylic, silicone, monofilament, sausages, and formaldehyde solution, 25 ¼ × 18 ¾ × 3 ¾ inches (64 × 47.5 × 9.5 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Party Time, 1995 GRP composites, foam, and contents of ashtray, diameter: 96 inches (243.8 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Party Time, 1995

GRP composites, foam, and contents of ashtray, diameter: 96 inches (243.8 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Myth Explored, Explained, Exploded, 1993–99 Glass, painted steel, silicone, monofilament, shark, and formaldehyde solution, in 3 parts, dimensions variable© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018. Photo: Prudence Cuming Associates Ltd

Damien Hirst, Myth Explored, Explained, Exploded, 1993–99

Glass, painted steel, silicone, monofilament, shark, and formaldehyde solution, in 3 parts, dimensions variable
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018. Photo: Prudence Cuming Associates Ltd

Damien Hirst, A Way of Seeing, 2000 Glass and steel vitrine, table, chair, ashtray, newspaper, slides, cup of tea, sponges, sand, glasses of water, and animatronic man with microscope, 96 × 156 × 120 inches (243.8 × 396.2 × 304.8 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, A Way of Seeing, 2000

Glass and steel vitrine, table, chair, ashtray, newspaper, slides, cup of tea, sponges, sand, glasses of water, and animatronic man with microscope, 96 × 156 × 120 inches (243.8 × 396.2 × 304.8 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, My Problem is You, 2001 Glass, stainless steel, plasterzote, and medical packaging, 70 ¼ × 35 ⅜ × 14 ¼ inches (179.8 × 89.9 × 36 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, My Problem is You, 2001

Glass, stainless steel, plasterzote, and medical packaging, 70 ¼ × 35 ⅜ × 14 ¼ inches (179.8 × 89.9 × 36 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Adam and Eve, Blue for Adam and Pink for Eve, 1997–2003 Glass, steel, formaldehyde solution, cow’s head, bull’s head, and household gloss on canvas, in 4 parts, each vitrine: 18 × 38 × 18 inches (45.7 × 91.4 × 45.7 cm); each canvas: 15 × 23 inches (38.1 × 58.4 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Adam and Eve, Blue for Adam and Pink for Eve, 1997–2003

Glass, steel, formaldehyde solution, cow’s head, bull’s head, and household gloss on canvas, in 4 parts, each vitrine: 18 × 38 × 18 inches (45.7 × 91.4 × 45.7 cm); each canvas: 15 × 23 inches (38.1 × 58.4 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Suicide Bomber (Aftermath), 2004–05 Oil on canvas, 72 × 48 inches (182.9 × 121.9 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Suicide Bomber (Aftermath), 2004–05

Oil on canvas, 72 × 48 inches (182.9 × 121.9 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Beautiful Bleeding Wound Over the Materialism of Money Painting, 2005 Household gloss and credit card on canvas, 60 × 84 inches (152.4 × 213.4 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Beautiful Bleeding Wound Over the Materialism of Money Painting, 2005

Household gloss and credit card on canvas, 60 × 84 inches (152.4 × 213.4 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Isonicotinoyl Chloride, 2005 Household gloss on canvas, 84 × 84 inches (213.4 × 213.4 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Isonicotinoyl Chloride, 2005

Household gloss on canvas, 84 × 84 inches (213.4 × 213.4 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Aubade – Crown of Glory, 2006 Butterflies and household gloss on canvas, 115 ⅞ × 96 ⅛ inches (294.2 × 244.1 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Aubade – Crown of Glory, 2006

Butterflies and household gloss on canvas, 115 ⅞ × 96 ⅛ inches (294.2 × 244.1 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, For Heaven’s Sake, 2008 Platinum and pink diamonds, 3 ⅜ × 3 ⅜ × 3 ⅞ inches (8.5 × 8.5 × 10 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018. Photo: Prudence Cuming Associates

Damien Hirst, For Heaven’s Sake, 2008

Platinum and pink diamonds, 3 ⅜ × 3 ⅜ × 3 ⅞ inches (8.5 × 8.5 × 10 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018. Photo: Prudence Cuming Associates

Damien Hirst, Painful Memories/Forgotten Tears, 2008 Gold-plated steel, glass, and Cubic Zirconia, in 2 parts, each: 72 ¼ × 108 ⅜ × 4 inches (183.3 × 275.3 × 10.2 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Painful Memories/Forgotten Tears, 2008

Gold-plated steel, glass, and Cubic Zirconia, in 2 parts, each: 72 ¼ × 108 ⅜ × 4 inches (183.3 × 275.3 × 10.2 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Black Sheep with Golden Horns, 2009 Glass, painted stainless steel, silicone, acrylic, gold, cable ties, sheep, and formaldehyde, 43 ½ × 63 ⅞ × 25 ¼ inches (110.3 × 162.3 × 64.1 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Black Sheep with Golden Horns, 2009

Glass, painted stainless steel, silicone, acrylic, gold, cable ties, sheep, and formaldehyde, 43 ½ × 63 ⅞ × 25 ¼ inches (110.3 × 162.3 × 64.1 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Amatoxin, 2010 UK ink and charcoal on canvas, 72 × 57 ½ inches (183 × 146 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Amatoxin, 2010

UK ink and charcoal on canvas, 72 × 57 ½ inches (183 × 146 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Ice Age, 2008–09 Metal, resin, and plaster pills and watercolor on canvas, 36 × 48 inches (91.4 × 121.9 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Ice Age, 2008–09

Metal, resin, and plaster pills and watercolor on canvas, 36 × 48 inches (91.4 × 121.9 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Grapefruit, 2016 Household gloss on canvas, 16 × 24 inches (40.6 × 61 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Grapefruit, 2016

Household gloss on canvas, 16 × 24 inches (40.6 × 61 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Revelation, 2016 Jacquard-woven tapestry made from wool, cotton, and silk, 98 ½ × 98 ½ inches (250 × 250 cm), edition of 20 + 4 AP© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Revelation, 2016

Jacquard-woven tapestry made from wool, cotton, and silk, 98 ½ × 98 ½ inches (250 × 250 cm), edition of 20 + 4 AP
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Veil of Unfolding Life, 2017 Oil on canvas, 108 × 72 inches (274.3 × 182.9 cm)© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

Damien Hirst, Veil of Unfolding Life, 2017

Oil on canvas, 108 × 72 inches (274.3 × 182.9 cm)
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2018

About

People are afraid of change, so you create a kind of belief for them through repetition. It’s like breathing. I’ve always been drawn to series and pairs. A unique thing is quite a frightening object.
—Damien Hirst

Since emerging onto the international art scene in the late 1980s, Damien Hirst has created installations, sculptures, paintings, and drawings that examine the complex relationships between art and beauty, religion and science, and life and death. From serialized paintings of multicolored spots to animal specimens preserved in tanks of formaldehyde, his work challenges contemporary belief systems, tracing the uncertainties that lie at the heart of human experience.

In 1988, while studying at Goldsmiths College in London, Hirst curated Freeze, a rolling exhibition in three parts, featuring his work and that of fellow students. This show is considered the debut of the artists who would come to be known as the Young British Artists, or YBAs, whose approach was characterized by a combination of entrepreneurial and oppositional attitudes, the use of found materials, and an interest in shock and spectacle. In the final iteration of Freeze, Hirst included two of his Spot paintings, which he painted directly onto the wall. The Spot paintings (1986–), of which there are now more than one thousand, present multicolored spots on white or near-white grounds and are painted by hand in glossy house paint. With these works, Hirst sought to paint as a machine yet allow for the subtle imperfections of the artist’s hand. In 2012 Gagosian showed more than three hundred Spot paintings at once across all eleven of the gallery’s locations.

Like many of Hirst’s series, the Spot paintings evoke various psychological and perceptual dichotomies: they are both calming and unnerving, beautiful and ordinary. A subseries, the Pharmaceutical paintings (1986–2011), features evenly spaced, multicolored circles. The title links these works to the medicine cabinets (1988–2012) and Visual Candy paintings (1993–95), all of which consider the cultural role of prescription drugs, the ways they are advertised, and the many promises that are made to their consumers. The medicine cabinets are filled with the empty packaging of various medications, highlighting the minimalist aesthetic of the boxes and plastic containers. The Visual Candy paintings push the idea of false promises even further. Alluding to movements including Impressionism, Abstract Expressionism, and Pop art, they are exuberant, colorful paintings with euphoric, perhaps facetious, titles such as Happy Happy Happy (1994), Wowee Zowee (1993), and Super Silly Fun (1993).

In 1991 Hirst created The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living: a fourteen-foot tiger shark preserved in a tank of formaldehyde. This work, part of the Natural History series (1991–2013), has become a landmark of contemporary art and exemplifies Hirst’s interest in bridging the gap between art and science. The Natural History series includes additional taxidermied animals, including sheep, cows, a zebra, a dove, and even a “unicorn”—some of which are bisected or flayed. That same year, in London, Hirst presented In and Out of Love (White Paintings and Live Butterflies), an exhibition featuring real pupas glued to white canvases. The pupas hatched in the gallery, releasing live butterflies into the space. In 1997 Hirst collaborated on Pharmacy Restaurant and Bar in London, for which he designed the interior, transforming his work into an immersive environment.

Since the early 2000s Hirst has produced ambitious, captivating works ranging from the kaleidoscopic butterfly paintings (2001–08)—made by placing thousands of butterfly wings in intricate geometric patterns onto painted canvases—to For the Love of God (2007), a platinum cast of a human skull set with 8,601 diamonds. Hirst’s first major retrospective, The Agony and the Ecstasy, was presented by the Museo Archeologico Nazionale in Naples, Italy, in 2004, and he was recognized in 2012 with a major retrospective at Tate Modern in London. While his 2017 exhibition Treasures from the Wreck of the Unbelievable filled the Palazzo Grassi and Punta della Dogana in Venice with monumental, fantastical sculptures made of precious metals and stones, covered in illusionistic barnacles, Hirst subsequently returned to the gestural immediacy of painting with the Veil paintings (2017–18), in which he continued his examination of color and its effects on the eye.

In 2015 Hirst opened the Newport Street Gallery in London, a realization of his long-term ambition to share his art collection with the public.

Damien Hirst

Photo: Oli Scarff/Getty Images

Website

damienhirst.com

Fairs, Events & Announcements

Alex Israel, Wave, 2020 © Alex Israel

Art Fair

Hong Kong Spotlight by Art Basel

November 27–30, 2020, booth S07
Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre
www.artbasel.com

Gagosian is pleased to participate in the inaugural Hong Kong Spotlight by Art Basel, the gallery’s third in-person art fair since the COVID-19 lockdown in March. Organized in conjunction with Fine Art Asia, the fair will present works from twenty-two Hong Kong–based galleries in a boutique setting. On view will be a range of thematic solo and group exhibitions, as well as films and specially curated art historical presentations.

Alex Israel, Wave, 2020 © Alex Israel

John Currin, Pistachio, 2016 © John Currin

Art Fair

West Bund Art & Design 2020

November 12–15, 2020, booth A102
West Bund Art Center, Shanghai
westbundshanghai.com

Gagosian is pleased to participate in West Bund Art & Design 2020 with an extensive group presentation. Along with the gallery’s booth at ART021 Shanghai, on view between November 14 and 15, this will be Gagosian’s first in-person art fair since the covid-19 lockdown in March. The gallery’s participation was made possible by extraordinary support from the artists involved.

John Currin, Pistachio, 2016 © John Currin

Damien Hirst, Fruitful, 2020 © Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2020. Photo: Prudence Cuming Associates

Support

Damien Hirst
Fruitful and Forever Editions

Organized in collaboration with Fondazione Prada in Milan, Damien Hirst has created four new limited-edition prints to raise money for Save the Children’s campaign Riscriviamo il Futuro (Rewrite the Future). The initiative aims to support Italian children from disadvantaged backgrounds who have been affected by school closures during the covid-19 crisis. The editions, titled Fruitful and Forever, feature bright, abstract details from Hirst’s new series of Cherry Blossom paintings, and are available through September 27, 2020. To purchase the prints, visit leviathan.heni.com.

Damien Hirst, Fruitful, 2020 © Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2020. Photo: Prudence Cuming Associates

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Museum Exhibitions

Cindy Sherman, Untitled #582, 2016 © Cindy Sherman. Photo: courtesy the artist and Metro Pictures, New York

On View

Crossing Views

Through January 3, 2021
Fondation Louis Vuitton, Paris
www.fondationlouisvuitton.fr

Presented in conjunction with a retrospective on Cindy Sherman, Crossing Views examines a selection of works from the collection of the Fondation Louis Vuitton, chosen in collaboration with Cindy Sherman. Echoing the artist’s work, the exhibition unfolds across two floors and is centered on the theme of the portrait and its interpretation through different approaches and media, including painting, photography, sculpture, video, and installation. Work by Damien Hirst, Albert Oehlen, Cindy Sherman, and Andy Warhol is included.

Cindy Sherman, Untitled #582, 2016 © Cindy Sherman. Photo: courtesy the artist and Metro Pictures, New York

Installation view, Dyr i kunsten, Arken Museum, Ishoj, Denmark, May 26, 2020–January 10, 2021. Artwork © Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2020. Photo: David Stjernholm

On View

Dyr i kunsten

Through January 10, 2021
Arken Museum, Ishoj, Denmark
uk.arken.dk

Dyr i kunsten, or Animals in Art, features sculpture, installations, video, photography, and paintings by a wide array of international artists whose work explores the ways that humans study, categorize, live with, and use animals and how we thus attempt to gain a deeper understanding of ourselves. Work by Douglas Gordon, Damien Hirst, and Carsten Höller is included.

Installation view, Dyr i kunsten, Arken Museum, Ishoj, Denmark, May 26, 2020–January 10, 2021. Artwork © Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2020. Photo: David Stjernholm

Simon Hantaï, Etude I, suite pour Pierre Reverdy, 1969 © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris, 2020. Photo: Claude Gaspari

On View

Soleils noirs

Through January 25, 2021
Musée du Louvre-Lens, France
www.louvrelens.fr

This sensory exhibition, whose title translates to Black Suns, offers a fresh perspective on the color black, which has been endowed with a multitude of symbolic meanings in Western art from antiquity to the present day. The exhibition features nearly 180 works, intermingling periods and disciplines, and spanning painting, fashion, the decorative arts, the moving image, and installations. Work by Douglas Gordon, Simon Hantaï, and Damien Hirst is included.

Simon Hantaï, Etude I, suite pour Pierre Reverdy, 1969 © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris, 2020. Photo: Claude Gaspari

Installation view, Colección Jumex: Al filo de la navaja, Museo Jumex, Mexico City, August 18, 2020–February 13, 2021. Artwork, front: © Dan Graham; ceiling © Studio lost but found/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2020

On View

Colección Jumex
Al filo de la navaja

Through February 13, 2021
Museo Jumex, Mexico City
www.fundacionjumex.org

This exhibition, whose title translates to On the Knife’s Edge, brings together works by more than forty international artists. Comprising four thematic sections—migration and liberty, the human body, the environment, and the inexorable passage of time—the show aims to address the issues shaping our contemporary world. Work by Douglas Gordon and Damien Hirst is included.

Installation view, Colección Jumex: Al filo de la navaja, Museo Jumex, Mexico City, August 18, 2020–February 13, 2021. Artwork, front: © Dan Graham; ceiling © Studio lost but found/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2020

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Press

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