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Empress Wu Zetian Discover the best available selection of prints by the artist Damien Hirst. Buy from art galleries around the world with Kooness! Kooness
9544.3645083933 EUR

Empress Wu Zetian

2022

Signed

From the series The Empresses

1

Size

100.08 x 100.08 cm
39.40 x 39 in

Reference

eeb983e8

Year

2022

Medium

Prints

Damien Hirst (b. 1965, British) “Wu Zetian” (2022) from the artist’s series of five prints known as “The Empresses”.

Laminated giclee print on aluminum composite panel, screen printed with glitter.

Signed and numbered 1223/2853 on the verso (Edition of 1284 (Physical Editions)/ 1569 (NFT Deed).

100 x 100 cm (39.4 x 39.4 inches).

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This glorious red composition consists of a pair of butterfly wings in the center that is surrounded by a circle of wings that blossom into  another hexagon of wings.  Each corner includes additional, intricate butterflies, and the patterns in the piece are spectacular.

In 655 CE Wu Zetian (624-705 CE) wedded Emperor Gaozong and increasingly involved herself in political undertakings.  She was remarkably knowledgeable and an effective Chinese ruler who brought stability to the realm by consolidating and uniting the Tang Dynasty at a time when it appeared to be disintegrating.

Damien Hirst has long been fascinated by butterflies and they have often been included in his images.  One reason is because of the way they could be used to explore themes of life and death.  Butterflies also have a spiritual heritage and play a symbolic role in many religions.  The spiritual heritage attached to the butterfly, along with the spectacular patterns Hirst creates in The Empresses collection indicate religious undertones which are a prominent theme in his work. 

Early in 2022, HENI Editions presented “The Empresses” by Damien Hirst, a series of five glorious prints depicting carefully composed images of butterflies. Both prints and NFT Deeds were available to purchase between January 28th and February 4th, 2022. The final number of editions produced was limited by the demand for each print during this very limited period of time.  The prints in this collection are all named after an Empress, linked to the notable historical periods in which they were influential.   Included in the series are Wu Zetian, Empress Theodora (Byzantine), Nūr Jahān (the de-facto Empress of the Mughal Empire), Suiko, the first recorded empress of Japan, and Taytu Betul, the Empress of Ethiopia in the 19th century.

1965 Bristol, United Kingdom

Damien Hirst was born in 1965 in Bristol and grew up in Leeds. In 1984 he moved to London, where he worked in construction before studying for a BA in Fine Art at Goldsmiths college. During his second year he conceived and curated a group exhibition entitled ‘Freeze.’ The show is commonly acknowledged to have been the launching point not only for Hirst, but for a generation of British artists. Since the late 1980s, Hirst has used a varied practice of installation, sculpture, painting and drawing to explore the complex relationship between art, life and death, explaining: “Art’s about life and it can’t really be about anything else... there isn’t anything else.” Through his work, he investigates and challenges contemporary belief systems, and dissects the uncertainties at the heart of human experience.


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