Damien Hirst portrait of Queen turns up in government archives

An previously unknown portrait of The Queen has been unearthed in government archives, painted by acclaimed British artist, Damien Hirst, in secret and donated to the nation by the artist himself.

Using the spin technique which made Hirst famous, the picture shows a portrait of Her Majesty in dark red and blue on a pale pink, blue and white background.

Hirst's formerly unknown painting of The Queen. Photograph by Prudence Cuming Associates © Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2016

Hirst’s formerly unknown painting of The Queen. Photograph by Prudence Cuming Associates
© Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. 

The piece was given to the Government Art Collection last year after being created in 2014; officials approached the artist for a piece for the national collection but realised the public purse could not stretch to another work to join one of the famous dot painting.

No one knew about the painting, as it was taken straight from the studio, and not added to Hirst’s official website of work.

Entitled ‘Beautiful Portrait, The Queen’, it is thought the painting would fetch millions if sold. Hirst donated the piece to the scheme as one of its supporters.

The collection will be displayed in government departments and embassies across the world.

Some are criticising the ‘bad boy’ of art for the pro-establishment painting, with The Telegraph’s art critic saying: “The trajectory of his career has gone from bad boy of British art to owning a Gloucester pad, appearing on the rich list and becoming part of the establishment.”

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1 comment

Reinaldo Martínez Mon 22 February, 2016 - 10:58 am

With the greatest respect, I am not sure whether this work can be termed as a painting. I an struggling to see art in “the spin technique that has made him famous”, and I have hard time trying to find talent and effort, and skill in making dabs of paint splash around in a machine driven spinning gadget. The subject (HM Queen Elizabeth II) was captured by a Prudence Cunning. IMHO she should be valued as the true artist who captured this charming expression of HM. That alone is a fine photograph. Why spoil it with a some preschool experiment splashing paint with little harmony, contrast or chiaroscuro?


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