“Shocking” photograph in exhibition causes controversy among academics

Posted by er134 at Jul 16, 2013 12:53 PM |
University of Leicester archaeologists criticise gallery for displaying an image of Damien Hirst holding severed head
“Shocking” photograph in exhibition causes controversy among academics

Photograph of Damien Hirst by Luke Stephenson

A “shocking” photograph of Damien Hirst embracing a severed head should be removed from an exhibition, according to an academic and archaeologist from the University.

Matthew Beamish of University of Leicester Archaelogical Service (ULAS) and Professor Sarah Tarlow, from the University's School of Archaeology and Ancient History, have sent letters of complaint to the New Art Gallery Walsall following their display of the image.

They assert the image shows no respect for the man – who would still be recognisable to friends and family - and goes against every professional standard for how the dead should be treated.

The image, titled ‘With Dead Head’, shows a grinning Hirst aged 16, clutching the head at a Leeds morgue in 1981.

They have since received a response from the gallery, but felt the response did not adequately address their complaints.

Share this page: