Damien Hirst
‘For the Love of God’

Feb 25, 2016

Masterpiece series

This week, in our Masterpiece Series, we delve into one of the most contentious contemporary art work: For the Love of God by British artist Damien Hirst.

1. It is a platinum cast of a 18th century human skull that has probably belonged to a 35 years old who lived between 1720 and 1810
2. The skull is jeweled with 8,601 diamonds, including a pear-shaped diamond on the forehead, weighing 1,106.18 carats in total
3. The art piece was sold on 30 August 2007 for £50 million, close to $100 million
4. The realization of 15 million pounds was financed by Hirst himself
5. Rumors say Hirst bought the artwork himself to level the value of his other works
6. Being a vanitas artwork, ‘For the Love of God’ is a memento mori reminding of the evanescence of human life
7. It is inspired by a Mexican skull covered in turquoise from the British Museum
8. It was first exhibited at the White Cube gallery in London before being shown at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam
9. It was designed and sculpted by Jack du Rose and manufactured by the jewelers Bentley & Skinner
10. It has inspired several contemporary artists such as Laura Keeble who created a replica with Swarovski crystals or Eugenio Merino who created a giant sculpture encased in glass of Hirst shooting himself.

Damien Hirst, For the love of God, 2007, platinum, diamond, human teeth

Eugenio Merino, For the Love of Go(l)d, 2009, silicon