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Daily Archives: May 26, 2012

Damien Hurst and the Sensation Shark

This post is one in a series, and is connected to the art exhibition Sensations.

You can read more about it HERE.

Some may find the content disturbing and the themes mentioned may be upsetting.

In other words, you need to make up your own mind whether it’s something you would like to engage in!

I wasn’t going to write about Damien Hurst as he has become a household name.

The papers screamed about his sensational art including pickled cows, sheep and sharks, Charles Saatchi, among others, was willing to drop a small fortune on his works. He has become the go-to artist of hedge-fund billionaires.

Then I thought that I cannot write him off simply because his art goes for $40 m plus.

This piece is titled ‘Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of a Living Person’.

To be honest the title is self-explanatory.

It’s a strange brush with death, as you observe a shark in formaldehyde from all angles.

The animal seems to be suspended in the glass casing.

I found this piece to be an interesting commentary on how we- humans approach nature.

The shark is dead and still in the water, so to speak.

 It is reminiscent of beautiful butterflies pinned to a backdrop.

We are able to observe nature up close, but without the energy of life, we are missing a vital element and are left with mere physical shells.

I think it says a lot about our lack of appreciation of nature, the need to, as The Book of Genesis states, name and own it instead of coexisting.

The piece that resonated with me more were the two sliced cows, divided by vertical cross-sectional cuts into 12 seperate segments. They are held upright in formaldehyde , with each element placed in its own glass case.

This meant that you were able to walk in-between the animal, so to speak.

 ‘Some comfort gained from the acceptance of the inherent lies in everything’

In some ways you have the feeling of violating the animal by strolling right through it, so to speak.

It’s interesting to observe the cross-sections, but also a bit iffy.

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