"You need to respect money because there are a lot of people who haven't got any money." These are the words spoken by the artist Damien Hirst in his recent interview with Will Gompertz of the Bbc. "You can definitely use money to get people's attention," he explains. "When I had my auction at Sothebys, I started getting noticed on the street by business men." Recognition is no bad thing in Hirst's eyes and he's certainly had plenty of that, over the years.
"You have to get people's attention if you want to change people's minds," he explains, describing how he loves the ethos of the 1970s punk movement but was too young to be an original punk, himself. Will asks the artist during the interview exactly how he wants to get people to change their minds and Hirst explains "I put together universal triggers. As an artist you're making artwork that hopefully excite people, things they can't forget. you change the world on very subtle ways, as an artist." Hirst was interviewed, surrounded by some of his most notorious pieces, including animals preserved in formaldehyde. Looking around the room, Hirst said "All this work that we've got in here is kind of acceptable now whereas when I first did it, it was kind of shocking so I think in that way, the world's changed."
In response to his critics, Damian talked about the British press' tendency to 'build you up to knock you down' and explained how he deals with any criticism that's levelled at him. "What I try and do is not try and take the nice things too seriously and then you can avoid the bad things."