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Edition size: 150
Size: H 102cm x W 76cm
Format: Signed Print
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Riot is a silkscreen print by contemporary artist, Damien Hirst. The print was made in 2017 and depicts the packaging of a pharmaceutical product. Hirst employs a minimalist design for this print, with white dominating the composition. Elements of the packaging, such as the product name are rendered in red, with the drug name, atazanavir, rendered in light blue. A strip of red runs across the top of the composition, contrasting with the faded blue border at the bottom of the print. Below the product name, ‘Riot’, Hirst includes scientific information regarding the tablet’s medical contents. In this print, Hirst merges art with science, blurring the boundaries between two seemingly opposed disciplines.
Riot is part of Hirst’s Eat the Rich series. The series is composed of twelve prints, all of which use the format of pharmaceutical packaging for their designs. The names of the prints refer to the fictional medications that Hirst has created. The conventional packaging contrasts with the unusual product name, ‘Riot’. A theme runs through the Eat the Rich as each product name that Hirst creates carries connotations of force, violence and aggression. Other examples from the series include Attack and Clash.
Hirst has had a longstanding interest in medicine and its depiction in art. Whilst in his second year at Goldsmiths in 1988, Hirst began his Medicine Cabinets series, in which the artist constructed various cabinets filled with the empty packets of his grandmother’s medication. In Eat the Rich, Hirst returns to depicting medicine, this time in print form, as opposed to his previous installations.