Bust of the Collector



Overall dimensions: 188 × 65 × 39.5 cm (74 × 25 9/16 × 15 9/16 in.)

The collector’s bust is hieratic. The frowning mouth and eyebrows give the figure an imperial aura, barely concealed by the coral covering his body and face. Its severity echoes some busts of Roman emperors such as the one of Caracalla made around 200 AD.

A mature work in bronze, Bust of the Collector is one of Damien Hirst's few self-portraits. The comparison to With Dead Head, a youthful self-portrait, is inevitable. The 1991 photograph shows the artist, 16, smiling beside a severed head. With Bust of the Collector, the tone seems to change radically, merging with the narrative of the "Treasures from the Wreck of the Unbelievable" exhibition, for which it was made.

One of the show’s signature works, Hirst's Bust of the Collector is in the Pinault Collection. It was presented for the first time at the Palazzo Grassi in 2017.
Damien Hirst's other artwork