Monday, March 19, 2012

Damien Hirst: On Money and Art

Newsweek Magazine has an interesting article by Blake Gopnik about Damien Hirst and his relationship with money/the market.
     What has happened in the last five years or so, however, is that each of those [early] single pieces has been incorporated into a vast, overarching work of art that could be titled “Damien Hirst, Inc.” His true medium is no longer flies or sharks or spots. His medium is the tabloid press, and the auction market, and his collectors, and his art’s peculiar reception.      “I’ve always been aware that the art somehow lies between the Mona Lisa and the postcards of the Mona Lisa. I think Warhol made it fine for artists to deal with all that?...?You’ve got to look at the world the way it is, and just reflect it back to the people who haven’t been born yet. The more you look at the world, the crazier it seems.”      In 2007, Hirst created a platinum skull covered in diamonds that he priced at $100 million, and that therefore stood as the perfect symbol of the lunacy of art’s current status... (In fact, when the diamond skull was announced as having fetched its record price, it turned out that Hirst and some pals were the buyers. The giant price tag was a kind of final touch that Hirst added to his own work.)      Warhol proposed that the business of art could also be great art. Hirst is Warhol updated for our freewheeling, free-market times.

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