Of Interest: Damien Hirst

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Sep 24, 2012 | By Maryam

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The term “starving artist” exists for a reason, but Damien Hirst has found a career’s worth of ways to avoid all of them. Reportedly the wealthiest living artist (with a net worth of about $300 million according to celebritynetworth.com), this painter, sculptor, spin art and spot art maker and installation artist is a name to know in contemporary art.

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Over the course of his twenty-year career, Hirst has made his name as the celebrated and debated poster boy of the British and contemporary art scene. People rave about Damien Hirst. His recent retrospective at the London Tate Modern was the museum’s most visited solo show, ever – more than Edward Hopper and Paul Gaugin and only a few hundred less than shared exhibit of Matisse and Picasso. People also rant about Damien Hirst. British art critic Julian Spalding was banned from Hirst’s Tate retrospective for calling it “Con Art”, a moneymaking con shrouded under the term Contemporary Art.

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If the categorization of “Con Art” strikes you as harsh, you should also know that in 1990 Hirst said, “I can’t wait to get into a position to make really bad art and get away with it. At the moment if I did certain things people would look at it, consider it and then say ‘f off’. But after a while you can get away with things.” Has Hirst made good on his own word?

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From the dead animals preserved in formaldehyde that brought him into the art world spotlight (see The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living, The Golden Calf, and Mother and Calf Divided) to the diamond-incrusted skull containing $23,860,500 worth of diamonds that has proved his ability to stay there (see For the Love of God), you’re more than likely to find a few things that – at the very least – will serve to spark conversation.

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Via Totally Cool Pix.