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Damien Hirst : 2012

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Damien Hirst : 2012
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PABUser avatarPosts: 382Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 10:34 pmLocation: UK Gender: Male

Post Damien Hirst : 2012

Damien Hirst is causing a bit of a hullabaloo in Britain with his retrospective show at Tate Britain.
The disapproval has two main sides: On one side it is argued 'This is not art' and on the other it is argued 'this is bad art'.

"For 1,000 years art has been one of our great civilising forces. Today, pickled sheep and soiled beds threaten to make barbarians of us all." - Daily Mail


Hirst can be considered a 'Conceptual Artist'....
Art goes on in your head," he says. "If you said something interesting, that might be a title for a work of art and I'd write it down. Art comes from everywhere. It's your response to your surroundings. There are on-going ideas I've been working out for years, like how to make a rainbow in a gallery. I've always got a massive list of titles, of ideas for shows, and of works without titles."


....And he takes a leaf out of Andy Warhols book, in emplying people to carry out the idea he has came up with .
Hirst said that he only painted five spot paintings himself because, "I couldn't be fucking arsed doing it"; he described his efforts as "shite","They're shit compared to ... the best person who ever painted spots for me was Rachel. She's brilliant. Absolutely fucking brilliant. The best spot painting you can have by me is one painted by Rachel.


Image

The above image is of one of his more famous works. Along with a sheep and a cow sawed in half in the same fashion as preserved as well as flies being bred on a cows decapitated head and left to be killed by a electric bug zapper in a box.

Now i think very little of Damien Hirst's work, however, these particular things he has produced i have no query with them in themselves and in themselves i quite like them. I quite like seeing a shark in formaldehyde, the same way (and to about the same degree) i quite liked seeing stuffed animals in a taxidermy shop. The question is however are they art and are they good art (questions i would equate to -is their a god and is he a good god.)

If these productions were produced on commission by a taxidermist for the natural history museum they would be insignificant. In fact they may have even received praise. But as 'Art' they are criticised for being abominable.

This is because Art, a truly mysterious thing, is supposed to be the highest of highs of our civilization. Real culture. High Culture. And a place for spiritual uplifting and enlightenment. But what 'art is' is about as variable as there have been gods. But what ever it is Fine Art is supposed to be the higher activity of the human race.

"It's often been proposed, seriously, that Damien Hirst is a greater artist than Michelangelo because he had the idea for a shark in a tank whereas Michelangelo didn't have the idea for his David," "The emperor has nothing on. When the penny drops that these are not art, it's all going to collapse. Hirst should not be in the Tate. He's not an artist. What separates Michelangelo from Hirst is that Michelangelo was an artist and Hirst isn't.


It may well become possible that damien hirsts works are refuted as art. But it is just as likely (if not more so) that in this changed culture with a changed opinion of what constitutes as art- A significant amount of 20th century and 21st century art will be refuted.
For example if they go by simple - human creativity and cultivation then the greatest work of art for the 20th century could be the washing machine.

Damien Hirst isn't great, artist or not. But he is established as an artist and has the same validity as an artist as any other. So long as people belief he is producing art and accept it as such and so on and so fourth. He is an artist.

If we can put the mystical enigma of art away for one moment (and any monetary value).....Would you prefer a massive shark conserved in a tank or a statue of some random guy with his cock out?

I don't particularly care for either but id go with the shark.
"The economic anarchy of capitalist society as it exists today is, in my opinion, the real source of the evil...there is only one way to eliminate these grave evils, namely through the establishment of a socialist economy." Albert Einstein
Mon Apr 30, 2012 2:36 am
PABUser avatarPosts: 382Joined: Fri Oct 09, 2009 10:34 pmLocation: UK Gender: Male

Post Re: Damien Hirst : 2012

For viewing pleasure

an absurd interview and conversation with Noel Fielding, but quite revealing

This may be restricted to british viewing
"The economic anarchy of capitalist society as it exists today is, in my opinion, the real source of the evil...there is only one way to eliminate these grave evils, namely through the establishment of a socialist economy." Albert Einstein
Mon Apr 30, 2012 2:44 am
Kovacs1979Posts: 10Joined: Sat Apr 14, 2012 11:03 am Gender: Tree

Post Re: Damien Hirst : 2012

I understand the idea behind conceptual art but for an artist to literally never touch some of their own work is just too far removed from what I believe an artist to be. Artists often need assistance with completing work, fair enough but to come up with an idea and then leave it purely in the hands of others feels like a massive cop out. I appreciate technical skill in art as well as the thought driving it.

So I'm in the 'this is not art' camp although people with a better knowledge of art and bigger bank balances than me would disagree so I suppose it is.
Mon Apr 30, 2012 12:17 pm
devilsadvocateUser avatarPosts: 246Joined: Sun Aug 08, 2010 8:28 pm

Post Re: Damien Hirst : 2012

I think Frank Zappa has provided one of the most succinct descriptions of art:

"The most important thing in art is The Frame. For painting: literally; for other arts: figuratively-- because, without this humble appliance, you can't know where The Art stops and The Real World begins. You have to put a 'box' around it because otherwise, what is that shit on the wall?"

That to me, gets to the heart of it. I think identity of all objects, not just art, are agent relative, both how they are intended to be used if manufactured, and how they are actually used by conscious agents. That's why you can't find a chair in Mars - Even if there were a rock that was in the shape of a chair, it was neither made with the intention of being a chair nor has it been used as a chair. On the other hand, I can use a natural rock as a hammer, or manufactured hammer as a bottle opener (not sure how well that'd work). In any case, the trick with art is to intend something to be art and transmit that intention to other people, and that's where the (figurative) frame becomes useful. I also think there is a lot of art to be found in the world, not only in the things that are framed to be such by artists.
Jazz isn't dead, it just smells funny.
Mon Apr 30, 2012 12:32 pm
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