Hirst has gone. The mega-exhibition. The greatest hits of the Ancient and the pre-modern worlds. Almost like he'd got a researcher to buy the book and decided to copy them. In Venice, sponsored by billionaire kitsch-addict Francois Pinault.
Venice. Culture deracinated from the power + fear of its roots, its rituals, its crimes + punishments. Disneyfied. Emptied of its original meaning - of all meaning, save that of a selling the the corpse as a commodity.
Mayan. Greek. Roman. Indian. Hebrew...nearly 300 objects from just East + West, North + South, masquerading as contemporary artefacts. Hirst's tabloid subversion now so very middle class, so tremendously unthreatening. And looking around one wonder why the public are here. What they're looking at with such concentration, such reverence. Is it the myth of Hirst himself? The ritual of going to the art gallery/ museum and belonging to the experience. Gallery & art being one - something you blithely buy a ticket to. Culture as taxidermy.
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