Tuesday, March 6, 2012


Settle down with a Coke or Champagne, and popcorn or munch on. That's Damien Hirst, the artist, lying on the floor beneath one of his "SPOTS" art works.

The success of Damien Hirst astounds me. It worries me. I suspect that my reaction to his success may end up embarrassing me -- I can't help wondering if this guy's art is phony baloney. Yes, I can dig up well known authorities in the art world who agree with me, but many, many more experts bow down to this 47-year-old-artist and deem him significant, important, an innovative MAJOR ARTIST.

Instead of quoting critics, or telling you the story of how and why the young beginner artist has become one of the most successful and highly praised artists in the world, read -- look -- see for yourself.

One of Hirst's first successful works was -- not a painting --
it was a foal with a gold horn in his forehead, preserved in a tank of formaldehyde -- a Unicorn called "THE DREAM."

Pre-"Unicorn," he created a few other art works that were tanks with other animals. I have difficultly perceiving pickled animals in tanks as art, but the concept is certainly innovative.

Then, Damien Hirst knocked out the art world with 'FOR THE LOVE OF GOD," a human skull, anointed with small and large diamonds. It's been sold for $100 million dollars. Having invested his own money in the diamonds, Hirst co-owns the skull, with the group that bought it. In the film clip below, you'll hear what Damien Hirst says about his art dealing with death.

You're seeing some of the art created by an artist who's incredibly successful financially, and very HOT right now. Here's what Time magazine's Belinda Luscombe and Hirst discussed that certainly establishes his fame. For me, their British accents get in the way of clarity, but clearly Belinda and Damien are sophisticated savants -- they jabber easily, almost banteringly, about money, life and death and art.

I have written about Damien Hirst before --- my post August of 2011, "Hot New Art " mentions his shark in a tank. Back then, I was shocked -- I am still shocked by Damien Hirst's success with "THE PHYSICAL IMPOSSIBILITY OF DEATH IN THE MIND OF SOMEONE LIVING."

Click and see this $8 million dollar GREAT WORK OF ART being assembled.

You can see if you visit NYC -- the Metropolitan Museum of Art in Manhattan is thrilled by the its acquisition of it.

Okay -- here's Damien Hirst's latest huge success. Hirst has 331 of his dot canvases, (out of about 1,400 he made), being exhibited, simultaneously, by eleven Larry Gagosian galleries in eight cities around the world. . Is this a retrospective, a philosophical depiction of his vision, his feeling, his statement about the world, about "Everything being a part of a whole that stretches forever, in every direction and dimension?" (I'm quoting Millicent Wilner, Gagosian Gallery Director, who's worked closely with Hirst, who says that is what is)

4-Chlorephenol, 2008

It is certainly impressive -- all these paintings of dots, spots, blue for blue, and red for love, and green for jealousy, and white, pink, all the different shades of spots, spots, spots, before our eyes.

Easy to look at, but why should we bother?
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