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This comprehensive monograph was produced to accompany the drawings retrospective Damien Hirst: Corpus: Drawings 1981 – 2006 held at Gagosian Gallery, Madison Avenue, New York in 2006. It features more than two hundred drawings from 1981 to 2006 which offer historical insight into rarely seen aspects of the artist’s work and process. Included are early drawings from Hirst’s student days; pencil sketches for seminal sculptures such as The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living (1991), The Acquired Inability to Escape (1992), Away from the Flock (1994) and The Hat Makes the Man (2003); preparatory diagrams for early spot paintings and medicine cabinets; a large-scale series of fourteen drawings for The Stations of the Cross (2004); and proposals for unrealised and future projects.
Accompanying the drawings is a conversation between the artist and political philosopher John Gray (author of Straw Dogs, False Dawn and Al Qaeda and What it Means to be Modern), and an essay by British historian Simon Baker.
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Damien Hirst was born in Bristol in 1965. He first came to public attention in 1988 when he conceived and curated ‘Freeze’, an exhibition of his own work and that of his contemporaries at Goldsmiths college, staged in a disused London warehouse. Since this time Hirst has become widely recognised as one of the most influential artists of his generation.
Through a varied practise of installation, sculpture, painting and drawing Hirst has sought to explore the complex relationship between art, life and death. Alongside over 80 solo exhibitions he has worked on numerous curatorial projects. In 2008, Hirst took the unprecedented step of bypassing gallery involvement in selling 244 new works at a Sotheby’s, London auction entitled ‘Beautiful Inside My Head Forever’.
Hirst was awarded the Turner Prize in 1995 and his contribution to British art over the last two and a half decades has been acknowledged in a major solo retrospective exhibited at Tate Modern, London. He lives in Devon and has studios in Gloucester and London.
Text © Damien Hirst & Science Ltd., All rights reserved, 2012