Damien Hirst Autopsy with Sliced Human Brain 2004
So what is the next show after the
current Pierre Huyghe video at the Portland Art Museum's Miller-Meigs endowed
room in the Jubtiz Center? You may have heard of him, it is Damien
Hirst (one of my all-time favorite artists and probably one of the most loved/hated
people in the history of art). He's obsessed with death, was generous enough
to help an entire group of Young Britsih Artists become successful and is the
master of presentation, having worked as an gallery installer before he became
famous. Hirst is also notable as the first major artist since Picasso to control
his own market. In a time where the market controls everything, this is yet
another example of how perceptive Hirst is.
This is a rare solo US museum show for Hirst, who has
avoided the museum blockbuster machine, preferring to make his own weather in out of the way places. Show opens January 13.
This is an important show for PAM. And Jeff, you are pretty bold for admitting he is one of your favorite artists. You should be expecting a mad mob of Stuckist art kids outside of your house, with torches and pitchforks, in about 30 minutes. He too is one of my absolute favorites, and I think he is far more important than most art world folks would like to admit.
This art/viewer engagement is no more than 'communication'. It need not be the didactism of BANKSY; the work of the American Abstract Expressionists equally communicated with the viewer but in a visual manner through the aesthetic level of non-figuration. Damien Hirst's 'The impossibility of death in the mind of someone living' communicates in the sense of spectacle when the viewer is first confronted with the monumentality of the installation; the 'Pieta' of Michelangelo communicates in a multitude of ways to differing viewers (religious inspiration, the artist's love of his work and his capability to transform his medium).
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