“Damien Hirst has surprised the art world again by announcing that he will reignite his relationship with Parisian gallerist, Emmanuel Perrotin, who in 1991, was one of the first two dealers to exhibit the artist. Perrotin considers Hirst to be an old friend and claims to be the only dealer to never profit from Hirst’s stardom. It is too early to tell, but it is suggested that a solo exhibition will be scheduled for 2010, but neither Hirst nor Perrotin have indicated if this is the beginning of a longer lasting artist-dealer relationship. Perrotin and Hirst’s partnership comes after Hirst’s infamous Sotheby’s auction, “Beautiful Inside My Head Forever,” previously covered by AO here in which noted art critic Robert Hughes accused Hirst of cutting dealers out of the action. “Everyone has written that Hirst wanted to bite the hand that fed him,” says Perrotin. “But there’s a difference between asserting independence and turning your back on dealers.” Whether Hirst is playing a well-calculated ironic card out of his ever-evolving deck or simply scratching the back that once scratched his own is still to be seen.

The two met in 1990, when Mr Perrotin showcased Hirst in a group exhibition at the dealer’s Rue Beaubourg gallery/apartment. The following year, Mr Perrotin gave Hirst a solo show titled “When Logics Die” (seen above) which involved autopsy tables with photographs of suicide victims, financed by White Cube owner Jay Jopling. The idea to begin again supposedly originated at the Pinchuk Art Foundation last year, where Hirst and Perrotin unexpectedly reconnected”.

Damien Hirst’s first exhibition with Emmanuel Perrotin Gallery in 1991 via Perrotin Gallery.

Thanks to Arts Observed for the article.