Damien Hirst, For the Love of God, 2012. Courtesy of Paul Stolper Gallery.

Damien Hirst: Skulls

In 2007, Damien Hirst made headlines with For the Love of God, a platinum cast human skull covered in 8,601 flawless diamonds. The bejeweled skull, which was bought for $100 million by an investment group that same year, is widely acknowledged to be the most expensive contemporary artwork ever made. Hirst’s fascination with skulls began at a young age—at 16, the artist began visiting the anatomy department of Leeds Medical School to draw the cadavers. “[Death is] just something that inspires me, not something that pulls me down,” Hirst once explained. “And every day your relationship with death changes.”

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