The Death of God


Household gloss on canvas with human skull, knives, coin and sea shells

Diameter: 213.4 cm

The Death of God, a work by Damien Hirst in the Pinault Collection, depicts a human skull whose eyes are formed by shells in the middle of a round white plate. The nose and mouth are pierced by knives. This enigmatic, surrealist sculpture prompts us to reflect upon death and religion, two themes at the heart of the artist's work.

Born in 1965 in Bristol, Hirst is considered the leader of the "Young British Artists" who became famous in the 1990s. His spectacular works featuring skulls, diamonds, exotic butterflies and animals explore the relationship between art, religion, science, life and death. Considered in its clinical, symbolic and spiritual aspects, death, the artist says, is a void that art can fill. Hirst revisits the genre of 17th century vanities.

The Death of God was presented by the Pinault Collection during the "Qui a peur des artistes ?" (“Who’s Afraid of Artists?”) show at the Palais des Arts in Dinard in 2009.
Damien Hirst's other artwork