Damien Hirst – The Currency: Artist starts setting fire to thousands of his spot paintings, Gemma Peplow, δημοσίευση Sky news [11/10/2022]Marilena Pateraki
Damien Hirst has started burning millions of pounds worth of his art as part of a project testing the value of physical paintings versus digital works – and told Sky News: “Who’s to judge what’s right and wrong and what’s real and not?”
The British artist, who rose to fame in the 1990s – winning the Turner Prize with an installation of a bisected cow and calf in formaldehyde – is setting fire to works created for The Currency, a project launched in July 2021.
With the collection of 10,000 pieces featuring his famous spot prints, collectors were given a choice: take a physical Hirst original (quite a bargain at $2,000) or opt for an NFT digital version.
Given a year to decide, buyers had to make their minds up in July this year. The result? Some 5,149 physical pieces will remain intact, their virtual doppelgangers deleted – while 4,851 NFTs will live on in the digital sphere, their painting equivalents going up in smoke.
Hirst has now started the fire for the unchosen physical pieces, with burning set to continue at his Newport Street Gallery near Vauxhall, south London, over the next few weeks.
He told Sky News he doesn’t see his project as burning his art, rather transforming it – but admitted that with his background firmly in the physical art world, he did need to get to grips with the digital one.
“I’m kind of rooted in the physical world, so I find the digital world more challenging,” he said. “I think this has to be part of the process. To create truly digital artworks is to destroy the physical artwork.”
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