Dead Black Brilliant Utopia by Damien Hirst - MyArtBroker

Utopia Damien Hirst

Find out more about Damien Hirst’s Utopia series, browse prints & editions for sale & view the works wanted by active buyers right now.

Utopia is a series by Damien Hirst published as a set of nine mixed media prints depicting some of his most enduring subjects like medical pills, cigarette butts and diamonds. The prints in the series are depicted in the style of Hirst’s cabinet works like The Void (2000), Memories Of/Moments With You (2008) and Purgatory (2008). The three motifs used through the series each hold unique symbolism for Hirst.

Upon first impression the prints in the Utopia series are sterile in their aesthetic, but like many of Hirst’s works, they bring profound questions of the human condition to the fore. Disrupting any binary discussion of life and death through the ambivalent symbol of the medical pill, the cigarette butt and diamonds, Hirst brings sickness, health, addiction and rehabilitation into dialogue with one another in the series. The first seven prints show medical pills on display in a cabinet. For Hirst, the display of pills represents a state of mind and the way that the contemporary individual has the ability to control feelings in body and mind through modern medicine.

The seventh print in Utopia, Hell, shows a cropped image of Hirst’s installation Dead Ends, Died Out, Examined from 1993 that displayed a series of stubs in a glass-fronted cabinet. The motif of cigarettes and smoking have featured repeatedly throughout Hirst’s artistic oeuvre as a symbol of the unacknowledged harm that they cause to the body. Of this Hirst has said, “Smoking may do more harm than heroin, although they both end in death. Legal drugs are far more frightening than the illegal kind. If you’re not breaking the law, it’s harder to know where the boundaries are.”

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