After confronting a wave of criticism, Damien Hirst will still go on to present his work at the Tate Museum of Modern Arts in London. English artist, Damien Hirst, will inaugurate his first exhibition designated to his works during the current year between the months of April 4 and September 9, in the Turbine Hall of the Tate Museum of Modern Arts in London, and sponsored by the Qatar Museums Authority. Hirst occupies a unique spot in British culture, as he is considered the main engine of a generation of talented artists emerging in the early 90’s.
The exhibition will form a part of the Cultural Olympiad, organized by London in order to celebrate the receiving of the Olympic Games. It will exhibit around 70 pieces by Damien Hirst, but will not include many of his new works. Particularly, due to the harsh criticism received when presenting in London during 2009, the piece ‘for the love of God,’ which displays a human skull covered with diamonds and platinum, will be excluded from the museum.
Nonetheless, the exhibition will include some of Hirst’s famous pieces, notably the shark fish, entitled ‘the physical impossibility of death in the mind of someone living,’ ‘mother and child divided,’ and the medicine cabinet, entitled ‘sinner,’ designed in 1988 when he was a student at the Goldsmith University. Additionally, a piece Hirst created when his idea of death was discovered will be displayed. This piece is composed of a glass box including flies, maggots, and the head of a cow, entitled ‘a thousand years.
Damien Hirst has been one of the most famous artists in Britain since 1990 and won a prize in 1995, with a value of 20,000 sterling pounds.
Damien was born in Bristol during 1965, to a father who was a mechanic and a mother who was an administrative employee. He had a passion for drawing since his early childhood and was fond of the works of Francis Davison. He studied fine arts at Leeds and then went on to continue at the Goldsmiths Arts University in London between 1986 and 1989. Damien was one of the founders of the Young British Artists Movement. He had organized his first exhibition in 1991, entitled ‘In and Out of Love.’ He began his work in 1988 by executing art that combined love with death. This was due to the fact that he worked at a morgue during his academic studies, causing death to become the center of his thoughts. In 1992, he accomplished a set of works based on the cadavers of animals such as pigs, cows, sheep, tigers, sharks, and others.
The Most Important Works of Damien Hirst
In 1992, Damien accomplished a set of monochromic artistic paintings containing a group of dried butterflies. His work in monochrome appeared more and more in 2003, through his black paintings involving dead flies or cows’ heads. These were created by spraying the blood of animals on the floor or around the places where the animals had been exhibited.
Damien achieved a standard record in August 2007 after selling his sculpture entitled ‘for the love of God,’ in which he sculpted a human skull of a man who had died in the 18th century and covered it with 8601 diamonds worth $100 million. Ben Lewis, an art critic and journalist, later discovered and revealed that the skull had been bought by a confederation which included Hirst himself.
After selling the ‘Lullaby Spring’ sculpture for $ 19.5 M during an auction organized by Suspense in its hall in the capital of London during June, Damien received the record for most expensive artistic piece of a living artist. The work was a steel cabinet covered in 6136 pills similar to drug pills, created in a number of different colors.
Damien specialized on animals kept in basins and filled with chemical materials. One of his works includes ‘the golden cave,’ which comprised of a bull placed in a basin and filled with the formaldehyde substance (a colorless gas) along with a golden disc atop its head. This work of art was sold for $16.5million. Similarly, his work ‘the kingdom,’ which was inclusive of a tiger placed in formaldehyde sold for $17.2million, and ‘the black shape,’ sold for $ 5.2million.
Tate Modern Museum
Tate Modern Museum is a national museum specializing in international modern art, and located in London. The museum is one of the 4 Tate family museums - Tate Britain, Tate Liverpool, Tate St-Yves, and the Tate Collection. It was established in 2000 in the heart of London, and exhibits modern artistic works. Whether British or international, this museum has largely contributed to reviving modern art in Britain because it holds the majority of the modern British Arts not included in the Tate Britain Museum.
Qatar Museums Authority
The Qatar Museums Authority which sponsored Damien Hirst’s exhibition in 2005 was established by His Highness Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani, and was run by Sheikha Al Miyasa Bint Hamad Al Thani. They consist of the Islamic Art Museum, the Qatar National Museum, the Orientalists Museum, and the Arab Museum for Modern Art.
Hirst’s work will be exhibited at the Turbine Hall of Tate Museum of Modern Arts in London between April 4 and September 9.
First Published in Men's Passion Issue #37 February 2012