capaneus by damien hirst – intricate insect mandala ‘capaneus’, 2012 by damien hirstinsects and household gloss on canvas1524 x 1219 mmimage © designboom

 

 

 

 

designboom had the chance to see the latest work of renowned british artist damien hirst at white cube during art basel in miami 2012. ‘capaneus’ is created by placing hundreds of varieties of insect and beetle species into household gloss paint, and then arranged in intricate geometric patterns. this piece is part of the ‘entomology’ series that hirst has been working on since 2009 – with each artwork named after phases and  characters in dante alighieri’s the ‘divine comedy’ – a famously portentous vision of the afterlife. this work’s title is informed by dante’s ‘inferno’ which tells of the warrior king capaneus being struck down with lightening and thunder bolts by the enraged deities of whom he loathes. dante’s portaryal stems from the latin poem ‘thebaid’ in which it is described how,  body and helmet aflame, capaneus falls from the walls to the ground below where he lies outstretched – ‘his lifeless body as immense as that of a giant.’ the work references hirst’s ongoing exploration of nineteenth century natural history artifacts and the paradox of having to kill  something in order to look at it.

capaneus by damien hirst   intricate insect mandala ‘capaneus’ is created by placing hundreds of varieties of insect and beetle species into household gloss paint, and then arranged in intricate geometric patterns. image © designboom

 

 

capaneus by damien hirst   intricate insect mandala this piece is part of the ‘entomology’ series that hirst has been working on since 2009image © designboom

 

 

capaneus by damien hirst   intricate insect mandala the artwork is named after phases and characters in dante alighieri’s the ‘divine comedy’image © designboom

 

 

capaneus by damien hirst   intricate insect mandala this work’s title is informed by dante’s ‘inferno’ which tells of the warrior king capaneus being struck down with lightening and thunder bolts by the enraged deities of whom he loathesimage © designboom

 

 

capaneus by damien hirst   intricate insect mandala the work references hirst’s ongoing exploration of nineteenth century natural history artifactsimage © designboom