Follow-My-Leader is one of 14 etchings that make up Damien Hirst’s second volume of the In A Spin, the Action of the World on Things portfolio from 2002. The print shows many concentric lines seemingly rendered with great control, indicating the mechanical process that Hirst uses to create this portfolio of etchings. Due to the tight-knit nature of the circling lines, this print exudes movement and speed as though it is actually spinning
The In A Spin, The Action Of The World Upon Things portfolio is directly inspired by Hirst’s very famous spin paintings that he began producing in 1995. These works were created with a spin machine in the artist’s studio, onto which he attached a circular canvas that he then threw paint on. These etchings were created using the same spin machine, instead with copper plates attached and sharp tools to draw the concentric circles.
The second half of the series’ title, ‘The Action Of The World On Things’ derives from a phrase the artist coined in 1999 when he was clarifying the origins of his spot paintings. He distinguished two aspects of his work: “an involvement with death and decay, and ideas and life: the action of the world on things exists somewhere, and the colour exists somewhere else. And it’s fantastic.” In A Spin, The Action Of The World Upon Things is said to unite these two elements of Hirst’s work.