For the Love of God skull to go on public display for very first time.
British artist Damien Hirst will showcase his diamond-encrusted skull to the public for the very first time at the Tate Modern next year, as part of a major retrospective of his work.
Hirst’s skull, named For the Love of God, will be hosted in a special, security-tight viewing room in the Turbine Hall at the Tate on London’s South Bank during a show that will run from April until the end of June 2012.
The platinum skull is set with 8,601 diamonds, has a 52.4 carat pink diamond on its forehead and retains its teeth, despite the skull itself dating from the 18ct century owner.
Hirst unveiled the work in 2007. It was valued at £50 million but was bought for an undisclosed sum by a mystery “consortium of businessmen” that turned out to include Hirst himself.
Chris Dercon, director of Tate Modern said of the skull: “You will be able to see the skull in a completely different context, without the hype and speculation.”
The skull was named loosely in homage to Hirst’s mother. “The idea of the title came from my mother – when I had crazy ideas she used to say, ‘For the love of God, what are you going to do next?’” said Hirst.