This is going to Hirst: former YBA partners with Snapchat for charity

Published by Florence McCrae on May 5th 2020, 11:11am

The first thing you think of when you hear the name Damien Hirst is a shark in a box. Hirst’s infamous piece The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living, cemented his name as a figurehead for the YBAs. However, amid the Covid-19 pandemic, his obsession with death remains unsated.

In an interview with The Daily Telegraph, Hirst defends his fascination: “I just always think about life and that very quickly runs into death, but I don't think it's a morbid thing.”

However, to present Hirst as a grim reaper obsessive is unfair. Indeed, his more recent corpus is more child friendly. His “spin paintings”, created by squeezing tubes of paint on a spinning canvas, are the type of art that Hirst is the very first to admit “anyone” can do.

He continues: “The whole thing of an artist is you kind of sit in the studio with a blank canvas, tortured and tormented, trying to work out what to paint. Spin paintings are much more generous.

“I have machines which I take to schools and do spin paintings, and everybody loves them, everybody can make a good one. You know, kids are probably better than bank managers, but even bank managers make good ones.”

It is estimated that Hirst is the UK’s richest artist, worth around £315 million. His apparent lack of skill has been a continued subject of debate in the art world.

Hirst is under no illusions regarding his artist capability. He says: "I got an E in my A-level art, because I was supposed to draw something precisely and I just wanted to throw paint around.”

However, Hirst’s conception of what great art actually is, is refreshing: “I always try and judge things by how children would see it. A great reaction to art, for me, has always been ‘wow’. I've always preferred things like natural history museums to art galleries.

“You can walk into an art gallery and feel a bit out of place, whereas in the Natural History Museum, everybody welcomes you with open arms. It's about exploration and discovery. You see a giant dinosaur and you go ‘wow’.”

This concept has inspired Hirst’s latest partnership with Snapchat, a filter that allows anyone to make a spiral painting. The money from the filter will go towards Partners in Health.

Hirst concludes: “Art should be generous and it's great if we can help.”

The Snapchat filter is out now.

Share this article


About The Leaders Council

The Leaders Council of Great Britain and Northern Ireland is a network of the most influential figures from across the country. Through detailed case studies, news coverage, podcasts and leadership events, we strive to unearth the authentic voice of British industry. Find out more About us and our Membership Benefits.


Related News Stories


Authored By

Florence McCrae
Literary Editor
May 5th 2020, 11:11am

Follow Us

Stay up to date with the latest news on politics and business. Follow @LeadersGBNI on Twitter for more live updates

Share this article


Popular Stories

NEWS | Published March 5th 2021, 2:02 pm

AKA Case Management Goes From Strength to Strength

© Copyright 2021, Leaders Council.