I am confused. I thought I hated Damien Hirst. I do, I do hate him. I have this inbuilt system of loathing designed just for the two words that make up his name and I don’t know why. I think it’s other people. Their dislike of him, which makes me hate him. If they don’t like him they take that further, they don’t like contemporary art, because of him. I can’t explain this. They are entitled to an opinion. Do I hate Damien Hirst or the perpetual Damien Hirst-ite idea that is still poisoning Britain’s interest in art? Today Hirst sometimes works with children to aid them in artistic senses, he has this childishness that people won’t dare appreciate, because they hate him. He did some stupid and senseless things to art, he hurt art, and now he is trying to make it better, right? Give it a kiss. Out of the good of his own heart. Fair enough. But the old him still exists, laughing away in the form of a skull made of money, made to make money, that made money and made many without much money pretty mad. They don’t forget, those who don’t know and that’s a lot of folks. I think we should forget him, forget everything he stood for, if he’s ready to be forgotten. I think if we did that then we would have a place to start. Will he be forgotten? No. Will people refuse to forget him? Yes. In today’s economic climate people are more ready to hate the gangster artist than before, it an us and them, polarized issue. This is what confuses me.
Saatchi tells me to be afraid, because if he doesn’t like me then what am I worth. I am an ego at the moment. And if I am not fed I will not become credible. Saatchi takes me for lunch and asks me to pick up the bill. Saatchi takes me home to see his wife but he doesn’t know which one she is.
Damien Hirst is here, I try to form my anger into a rational statement, but he’s helping a child do a painting, and he doesn’t even look cynical.