One of Damien Hirst's latest exhibitions, "New Beginnings 5", opened last September 17 at Sotheby's auction house in London. A new kind of art show, it is a collection of sculptures that have previously been sold at auction by the artist.
Hirst encouraged his original buyers to make new additions to the exhibited works. These new sculptures are, in effect, new editions of existing works. They will be auctioned on October 3 and 4, with proceeds going towards the new Damien Hirst Foundation which supports a residency program for artists at London's White Cube Gallery. The new "edition" items are priced from $33,000 to $2,000,000.
"I wanted to make new work for the new show," said Hirst in a Sotheby's press release. "But I felt that it would be better if I invited my previous buyers to also add new pieces so that everyone was able to participate and help create new beginnings."
The new works by Hirst include new sculptures based on his own and other artists' works: new butterfly pieces, new medicine cabinets, new animals with ball-mounted noses. In total there are thirty new works made especially for this show which is taking place simultaneously in London and Hong Kong. There will be another auction of these new Hirst works at Sotheby's New York in October.
With these new works selling at auction, Damien Hirst is following in the footsteps of Andy Warhol and Jeff Koons: artist-sellers who started new careers as art collectors. In 2008, Koons' new 'art' item was a flower painting that he sold to an anonymous collector for $155 million.
Damien Hirst was born in raised in Bristol, England back in 1965. He went to Goldsmiths College, London where he studied art and received a Bachelor of Arts degree. He has had numerous exhibitions around the world since 1988 including Sotheby's new gallery space at Hong Kong's Pacific Place shopping center.