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Main pageNewsOn 25 April the PinchukArtCentre in Kyiv, Ukraine, opens the largest solo eshibition Requiem by Damien Hirst

On 25 April the PinchukArtCentre in Kyiv, Ukraine, opens the largest solo eshibition Requiem by Damien Hirst

23 April 2009

On 25 Aprill the PinchukArtCentre (Kyiv, Ukraine) will present Requiem, a major retrospective of over 100 works dating from 1990 to 2008, by Damien Hirst. Requiem opens on 25th April and continues through 20th September 2009. The exhibition also includes 40 new skull paintings created by the artist between 2006 and 2008. The show-case is located in the art-center and in a specially constructed pavilion in the courtyard of the Arena complex. The exhibition will continue through 20th September 2009.

In his work over the last two decades, Hirst has continually produced paintings, sculptures and drawings that radically and directly address our shared quest for life in the face of inevitable death. Through an exploration of beauty and decay, love and desire, science and religion, history and art, Hirst has created some of the most conceptually profound and challenging artworks of our time.

Requiem brings together many of the artist's most celebrated works. Ranging from early iconic sculptures such as A Thousand Years, 1990 and Away from the Flock, 1994 to more recent works like the monumental butterfly triptych, Doorways to the Kingdom of Heaven, 2007 as well as Death Explained, 2007, a sculpture of a shark cut in half in formaldehyde, the exhibition shows the extraordinary breadth of Hirst's artistic enterprise.

Since the start of his career, Hirst has pushed the boundaries of art and what it means to be an artist. Requiem bears witness to a bold new direction in his work by showing for the first time a series of skull paintings he created between 2006 and 2008. In works such as Floating Skull, 2006, The Meek Shall Inherit the Earth, 2008 and Men Shall Know Nothing, 2008, Hirst returns to the solitary practice of painting and confronts, in very personal terms, the darkness that lies at the heart of human nature and experience.

Victor Pinchuk: «This exhibition is of great significance but what is most important for me is that the opportunity to see Hirst's new body of work occurs first in Kyiv. Damien's exhibition in Kyiv symbolises the reciprocal and mutually beneficial relationship between contemporary Ukrainian culture and that of the rest of the world. They share a common ground.»

Eckhard Schneider, General Director of the PinchukArtCentre: «With this fundamental retrospective including a cycle of new paintings the PinchukArtCentre gives an important international contribution to the debate surrounding one of the leading artists of our time.»

Requiem is made possible by the loaning of key works from private collections. The exhibition was curated by Eckhard Schneider and developed in close cooperation with Damien Hirst and Victor Pinchuk. In hosting a major retrospective of one of the most important artists working today, the PinchukArtCentre is testament to the Ukraine's ongoing cultural development.

Damien Hirst has prepared a present especially for Kyiv: on Saturday 25 April and Sunday 26 April four «spin painting machines» are to be installed in the courtyard of the Arena complex. With these devices all visitors wishing to produce their own work of art will have such opportunity. Damien Hirst and his assistants will be there to help. The artist himself will sign these precious souvenirs. The spin painting machines will be available to the PinchukArtCentre visitors on the first two days of the exhibition from 12.00 to 21.00. This action is free of charge. The art workshop is located inside Arena complex. The entrance is to the right from the art centre (following the sign).

In addition to the opening of the Requiem exhibition, the PinchukArtCentre launches a new comprehensive educational programme. Under this programme, from now on, there will be 2 guided tours per day for the art centre visitors. They start at 14.00 and 19.00. Groups of 20 people will be formed at these times near the reception counter on the first floor. The tours will be led by the specially trained guides fluent in at least one of the foreign languages. The guides, selected from the Ukrainian youth, were trained by international experts, art centre representatives and Damiem Hirst himself. From now, these guides will be engaged in all prospective PinchukArtCentre exhibitions. Furthermore, there will be regular tours organised for pupils and students from Ukrainian schools and universities.

Establishing an Information Centre is another task set within the educational programme. This centre will be providing more information about all exhibitions at the PinchukArtCentre. The Information Centre will include 8 PCs and a video screen to help visitors find out more about Requiem exhibition, review the most interesting interviews with Damien Hirst, articles about him, photographs form different periods of the artist's life and work and other useful information.

And last but not least, the art centre opens a library with a collection of specialised literature, art editions and catalogues.

The exhibition will be open from 25 April till 20 September 2009
Viewing hours: Tuesday-Sunday: 12:00 — 21:00 Closed — Monday
Admission is free

PinchukArtCentre Block А, 1/3-2, Chervonoarmiyska Street/Baseyna Street Besarabka quarter
Kyiv 01 004

Contact information:
Tel.: +38 044 590-0858 or [email protected]



Background information:

Born in Bristol in 1965, Damien Hirst grew up in Leeds and studied at Goldsmiths College, London. Most notable amongst the exhibitions he curated whilst at college was Freeze, in 1988, in which he exhibited his work and that of his contemporaries. The exhibition is widely believed to have been the starting point of the Young British Artists’ careers, and a defining moment in kick-starting cutting edge British contemporary art.

Hirst’s body of work confronts the scientific, philosophical and religious aspects of human existence and includes sculpture, painting and printmaking. He has exhibited widely and was awarded the Turner Prize in 1995 for ‘The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living’. In 2004, Hirst collaborated with Sarah Lucas and Angus Fairhurst to exhibit recent works at Tate Britain, under the title In-a-Gadda-da-Vida. In 2006, works from the artist’s murderme collection were exhibited at the Serpentine gallery, London: ‘In the darkest hour there may be light. ‘

Hirst’s work can be found in many important collections worldwide, including Tate, London, UK; British Council, UK; MoMA, New York, USA; Hirshorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington DC, USA; National Galleries of Scotland, Edinburgh, UK; Broad Art Foundation; Centraal Museum, Utrecht, Netherlands; Neue Galerie Graz, Austria and State Museum of Berlin, Germany.

PinchukArtCentre is one of the largest centres for contemporary art in the Eastern Europe, opened in September 2006. The art-centre is one of the projects of the Victor Pinchuk Foundation in the realm of culture. Among the key missions of the PinchukArtCentre is to present exhibitions by leading international and Ukrainian artists, support varied cultural projects and other. To the date, the PinchukArtCentre has presented nine major exhibitions viewed by over 500 000 visitors. In June-November 2007, the PinchukArtCentre officially presented Ukraine at the 52nd Venice Biennale with the art project: “Poem about an Inland Sea”.