In the biggest showcase of Damien Hirst’s work to date being open to the public, I couldn’t do much else but be in awe of him. Even as a man who could be argued to be more of a showman than an artist, his conceptual ideals have reconfigured where one can draw the line as ‘art.’ Although this is nothing new, he is shaping art of the future as one of today’s Young British Artists.
No one else can hold cased animals in formaldehyde, alive butterflies and series of dotted colour paintings in one exhibition with quite the same effect. Not a random collection of pieces, I would say, more a set of ideas challenged and placed with a physical statement.
Yet, ‘For the love of God’ is possibly the most controversial and headlined piece of his career. Is any piece of art work worth spending £50 Million to create? He spent his own money, having others create his idea: who is the artist now? Beautiful as it appears, I think the diamond encrusted skull holds an equally empty quality, due to its extremity. Striving for perfection, he has the audience queuing in anticipation, wanting to see what this much money looks like. ‘Hopefully, in the end its nothing to do with money.’ Hirst said.
Stating many times how he works conceptually with death, perhaps this is where the intrigue of the public lies concerning his work. Anyway, it is well known that if you feel death it is only really because you are alive.