Damien Hirst has unveiled an iconic yet rather unusual work that will be auctioned off at Christie’s, London, next month in an effort to raise money for the charity, Kids Company. Kids Company provides practical, emotional and educational support to vulnerable inner-city children and young people, a cause Hirst has supported for the past six years. The charity incorporates art as a form of therapy and in 2012, Camila Batmanghelidih, founder of Kids Company invited Hirst to a day-event in London’s Covent Garden Piazza where 150 students created spin paintings.
Hirst’s iconic spot paintings take on a new form as Disney requested a recreation of the universal and powerful icon, Mickey Mouse. The artist now joins a group of famous artists who took on the world’s most loved mouse including, Andy Warhol in his ‘myth series’, Roy Lichtenstein’s “Look Mickey” and Claes Oldenburg.
Carlotta Saltini, Vice President of Marketing Mickey Mouse and Friends for The Walt Disney Company EMEA says: “Damien Hirst’s “Mickey” painting is a great example of a modern, innovative and creative interpretation of the world’s most famous mouse whose never-ending appeal spans across generations of audiences. We’re also thrilled that this collaboration will benefit vulnerable children and young people.”
Damien Hirst comments, “Mickey Mouse represents happiness and the joy of being a kid and I have reduced his shape down to the basic elements of a few simple spots. I hope people love it, because it is still instantly recognizable – Mickey Mouse is such a universal and powerful icon.” Twelve dots to be exact.
Painted in 2012, “Mickey” is 72 x 41.5 inches made of household gloss on canvas. It will be on view at Christie’s auction’s pre-sale exhibition from the 8 until 13 February 2014.