Unsigned copies also available.
In 2008, Damien Hirst created a series of one hundred and fifty paintings, each titled after an Old Testament psalm, and made from butterfly wings and household gloss paint on canvas. The ‘Psalms’, in which iridescent butterfly wings combine to form kaleidoscopic patterns reminiscent of Gothic stained glass windows or Buddhist mandalas, were conceived nearly twenty years after the artist’s first use of the insect. Now one of his most recognisable motifs, the butterfly is here used to address some of Hirst’s most enduring themes: beauty, art, belief, life and death.
This stunning publication provides a comprehensive survey of the series. Each of the fully illustrated paintings is accompanied by the psalm from which its title derives, the biblical text rendered on images of individually selected colour marble samples. With the addition of a complete list of works and essays by writers Michael Bracewell and Amie Corry that investigate the historical and conceptual background to the works, ‘The Complete Psalm Paintings’ is an exquisite companion to one of Hirst’s most beautiful series.
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