“Damien Hirst's best ideas” will bring ₤65 000 000

D. Hirst. Dream. 2008. Estimate ₤2 000 000–3 000 000. The beautiful inside my head forever. Sotheby’s. London, September 15

It seems there is no doubts what event in the world of modern art is to be the main one this autumn. Several months ago Sotheby’s announced of its intention to hold large solo auction sales named The Beautiful inside my Head Forever by the leader of modern British avant-guard Damien Hirst. Certainly this information aroused excitement.

For 20 years Hirst is one of the brightest and extraordinary representatives of the western art culture. The gifted artist and the successful businessman continues to astonish the world. People admire and hate him. However very few people can remain indifferent to that he creates and nobody knows what to expect.

Hirst is very popular: the installation Lullaby Spring sold for ₤9 700 000 in 2007 made the artist one of the three the most highly paid living artists. Celebrated Object of Infernal Glamour − the diamond skull For the Love of God was bought by a group of anonymous investors for $100 000 000.

The next “blockbuster” is coming: The Golden Calf, the famous golden calf estimated at ₤8 000 000-12 000 000 is to be the main lot of the forthcoming auction sales which will take place on September, 15 and 16 in London. Experts assume the estimate to be exceeded enormously. It will make Hirst’s new “formaldehyde” a real rival to the Balloon Flower by Jeff Koons sold at Christie’s in June, 2007 for ₤ 12 970 000. Meanwhile Koons is the second in the list of the most highly paid artists of our time, inferior a little to Lucian Freud.

Till recently all the information concerning the future auction sales came only to Golden Calf. Sotheby’s made a small pause having given the possibility to assume the new surprises by the British provoker. At last on July, 28 the auction house published the detailed press release of the Beautiful inside my Head Forever auction. The catalogue of the two-day auctions will include Hurst’s 223 works totaling approximately ₤65 000 000. The estimate of the lots the majority of which have been made in the last two years will range from ₤15 000 to ₤ 12 000 000. As it was predicted all the top positions in the catalogue are taken by “canned goods” − works from a scandalous Natural History series.

The top lot the Golden Calf which is the bull preserved in formaldehyde was of the highest estimate. Horns and hoofs of the “main character”, no less than armature of a glass aquarium are made of gold, and the whole composition is made on an enormous marble pedestal. Probably, “Taurus” is not to be Hurst’s most expensive work, but the biggest of them is to be for sure.

The sculpture “Dream” (2008) is also from Natural History series. The figure of a mythical unicorn made, according to the description, from “a foal, rubber, steel and silicone will be put up for sales at an estimate of ₤ 2 000 000-3 000 000. With all specificity of the material this work is one of Hurst’s most graceful and harmonious “formaldehydes”.

The composition “Kingdom” (2008) is estimated at ₤ 4 000 000-6 000 000. The first shark named Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of the Living Being was made in the mid-nineties and was considered the most famous work by the artist for a long time. It was this picture exposed among other exhibits of the celebrated exhibition Sensation which became the start of the Hurst’s breath-taking career. In 2004 the shark belonging to famous art dealer Charles Saatchi was redeemed for ₤ 6 500 000 by the American collector Stephen Cohen.

The composition the Incredible Journey (2008) is estimated at ₤ 2 000 000-
3 000 000. It is the most expensive dead zebra in the world.

Among the traditional works is diptych Memories of/Moments with you (2008). Estimated at ₤ 800 000-1 200 000 this pair object made of the gilt steel and paste is on the fifth place in the list of the most expensive lots.

Among other highlights is the Damien Hurst’s the most “picturesque” work -the huge round canvas named the Rose Window (Durham Cathedral, 2008). It will be put up for the auction sales with an estimate of ₤ 700 000-900 000.

The graphic work Hexanediamin (2008) is one of few works made of traditional pencil on paper. The lot makes ₤ 30 000-40 000.

The Beautiful inside my Head Forever sales will begin in London on September, 15. On September, 5, Sotheby’s will give auctioneers the opportunity to see Damien Hurst’s works in the course of the preauction exhibition which will last 10 days.

Nowadays there are a lot of opinions concerning the forthcoming auction sales. For example, it is expected that not all the lots will find their buyers; to prove it Hurst’s unsold works exposed at recent Art Basel festival are mentioned.

However the majority of observers agree in opinion that Sotheby’s result will justify suggestions.

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Published in: on September 20, 2008 at 2:14 am  Leave a Comment  
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