Hirst’s butterfly etchings are rendered here in fine detail, appearing from their black backgrounds like encased species in the enthusiast’s collection. Having been depicted in art, embedded in resin and characterized in literature for many centuries, the butterfly has wide significance as a symbol of love, regeneration, fortune, freedom, spirituality and death, several of which are referenced in the etchings’ titles. Part of the heritage and visual identity of Hirst’s work since his early days, they are the newest additions to one of his most popular motifs.
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