LONDON (UK), 8 April – When I think of Damien Hirst the white Spots come to mind. Imperceptible artists struggling for fame, coming out from the white fray. Then I think of the colourful Spots, like stars on The Memorial Wall, where any of the stars might represent all the artists who left a contribution to Art. And afterall Hirst deserved one of those spots.
“I ● DH” can be read on the t-shirts or mugs he sells, he has been able to penetrate the art market, the design market – see Other Criteria – I even have a limited edition toilet paper with spots, not by him, of course, it is just a coincidence, but this upsidedown pop art is funny. Because what is contemporary art about if it is not messing around with everyday things? All the stereotypical 80s tattoos such as skulls, butterflies, but also pills in this doped society, death in several forms and The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living. Yes, he might be considered a shark in art, but he is a shark among piranha, it can be said, although most of the others are only Doctor Fish artists.
It is not necessary to quote Andy Warhol to find a legitimacy in Hirst’s career. He made it, not for many of the works which are only signed, he made it because he has been able to catch unprepared people who came to see the his pieces. People who did not expect to have to reflect about their own life, or better said, their death. The meaning of life comes up along with death and its smell and its buzzing.
Hirst’s works are vanity mirrors, where Narcissus can’t drown but all the followers do.
We are all butterflies of In and Out of Love, we can decide to be stuck in our cocoons or to be stuck on the canvas to become an art piece.
Hirst’s retrospective will be displayed at Tate Modern until 9th September 2012.