In September, Sotheby’s will be the scene. Damien Hirst is auctioning the bulk of his output from the last two years. A wide array of art will be made available to the public from butterflies to pills, drawings to monumental formaldehyde sculptures.
The auction/show will be the first chance to witness “The Golden Calf”. The piece is composed of a bull beset in formaldehyde adorned with horns, hooves and headdress all cast solid in 18-carat gold. The case accommodating this false god is made from gold-plated stainless steel and glass. There have been preservation issues with many of the previous formaldehyde works. It would seem that these problems have been belayed in the newest efforts which may make the bidding bullish on this homage to idolatry.
Moving this exhibit out of the gallery to the auction house is yet another bold and brilliant move. Hirst says of his experiment, “It’s a very democratic way to sell art and it feels like a natural evolution for contemporary art. Although there is risk involved, I embrace the challenge of selling my work in this way. I never want to stop working with my galleries. This is different. The world’s changing, ultimately I need to see where this road leads.”
Beautiful Inside My Head Forever
15-16 September 2008