“A veil is a barrier, a curtain between two things, something that you can look at and pass through, it’s solid yet invisible and reveals and yet obscures the truth, the thing that we are searching for” notes the acclaimed British enfant terrible Damien Hirst on his latest exhibition which is destined to mesmerise Hollywood.
Gagosian presents Damien Hirst’s latest series, “The Veil Paintings” in Los Angeles -almost six years after “The Complete Spot Paintings” in 2012.
Following “Treasures from the Wreck of the Unbelievable,” his highly ambitious sculpture exhibition at the Palazzo Grassi and Punta della Dogana in Venice last year, Hirst was drawn towards the immediacy of painting and a return to the studio.
This new series takes the Visual Candy paintings of the 1990s as a point of departure and embraces colour and gestural painting on a large scale.
Referencing both Impressionism and Abstract Expressionism, “The Veil Paintings” layer brushstrokes and bright dabs of heavy impasto, enveloping the viewer in vast fields of colour.
“The Veil Paintings” coincides with “Colour Space,” a solo exhibition of new paintings from 2016 and sculptures at Houghton Hall in Norfolk, England (March 25–July 15, 2018).
Damien Hirst first rose to public recognition in 1988 during his time studying at Goldsmiths College in London, when he conceived and curated “Freeze,” a group exhibition of his work and that of his contemporaries at Goldsmiths.
In the near quarter century since that pivotal show, Hirst has become one of the most prominent artists of his generation. Through work that includes the iconic shark suspended in formeldahyde, The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living (1991), to the platinum cast of a human skull set with 8,601 flawless diamonds, For the Love of God (2007), Hirst takes a direct and challenging approach to ideas about existence.
Of the latter, art historian Rudi Fuchs has said, “The skull is out of this world, celestial almost. At the same time, it represents death as something infinitely more relentless. Compared to the tearful sadness of a vanitas scene, the diamond skull is glory itself.”
“There [are] four important things in life: religion, love, art and science” the artist has said. “At their best, they’re all just tools to help you find a path through the darkness. None of them really work that well, but they help. Of them all, science seems to be the one right now. Like religion, it provides the glimmer of hope that maybe it will be all right in the end…”
Damien Hirst was born in 1965 in Bristol, England. He was included in the 1992 Young British Artists exhibition at Saatchi Gallery in London, and in 1995, he received the Turner prize. Hirst lives and works in London and Devon, England.