11,000 visitors for first week of Damien Hirst show at Leeds Art Gallery

By Nick Owen | 02 August 2011
A photo of a large multicoloured sculpture
Damien Hirst, Mantra (2008). Butterflies and household gloss on canvas© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2011
Visitor numbers have surpassed all expectations for the first-ever free display of works by internationally renowned artist Damien Hirst at Leeds Art Gallery.

More than 11,000 people attended in the first week of the eagerly anticipated exhibition, which is part of the national ARTIST ROOMS programme.

The programme sees collections of modern and contemporary art held by Tate and National Galleries of Scotland go on display around the country with support from the Art Fund.

Councillor Adam Ogilvie, Leeds City Council Executive Member for Leisure, said: “We always knew that hosting these works by Damien Hirst was going to be really popular and it is fantastic that so many people have come along to see the exhibition.

“We hope to see many more people come and take a look in the coming weeks”.

The pieces on display reflect the development of Hirst’s career, from his student days at Leeds College of Art and Design to his establishment as one of the world’s highest profile artists.

Alongside Away from the Flock, Hirst’s signature formaldehyde sheep from the early 1990s, the exhibition also features the large cabinet piece Trinity – Pharmacology, Physiology, Pathology (2000).

The key ideas underpinning Hirst’s career – birth, illness, death and religion – are identifiable in the exhibition, and have been boosted by items on loan from private collections.

He Tried to Internalise Everything (1992-94) is on loan from the Arts Council Collections, as well as Hirst’s recent A Poison Painting diptych from his 2010 Poison series.

  • Exhibition continues until October 30 2011.
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