Hirst's sheep gets an armed guard
Tuesday 03 June 2008
If you thought Damien Hirst's pickled animals had lost the power to shock, think again.The embalmed sheep that created a sensation and swept the Young British Artist to superstardom is at the centre of a mounting controversy in Los Angeles, after being given its own armed guard.
Visitors to the Broad Contemporary Art Museum, the city's new $120m (£61m) gallery, which opened in February, have expressed disquiet at the presence of three gun-carrying security officers, one of whom now stands a few feet in front of Hirst's 1994 Away From the Flock.
The guard has been criticised for interfering with the viewing experience of the sheep-in-formaldehyde and preventing visitors feeling welcome to linger over the exhibit.
Formaldehyde, a carcinogen, is toxic and the museum is increasingly concerned that vandals may attempt to smash the tank in which the sheep is housed and create an environmental disaster. The Broad was evacuated for an hour in April after Hirst's sheep sprang a leak.
Across the globe, vandalism has become a problem for galleries housing modern art.
In recent years, visitors have urinated on a Marcel Duchamp urinal at the Tate Modern in London, vomited on Mondrian's Composition in Black, Red and White in New York, and frolicked in Tracey Emin's My Bed.
Hirst's sheep has been a target in the past. In 1994, when Away From the Flock was first displayed at the Serpentine in London, the artist Mark Bridger poured black ink into the tank, relabelling it "black sheep".
GlastonburyWI to make debut appearance at Somerset festival
TV reviewIt has taken seven episodes for Game of Thrones season five to hit its stride
FilmPalme d'Or goes to radical and astonishing film that turns conventional thinking about immigrants on its head
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Man on naked bike ride gets ejected after becoming aroused
- 2 Charles Kennedy 1959-2015: A gifted, compassionate politician whose career was cut short by the 'demon drink' - latest news
- 3 Ann Summers survey reveals the UK's favourite sex position
- 4 Jaden Smith wears gender fluid dress to high school prom with Hunger Games actress
- 5 How much sex should I be having?
The 1975 leave social-media after cryptic comic strip tweet hinting at possible break up
Britain's Got Talent 2015 final: Jules and Matisse used secret dog double for winning tightrope act
Netflix is testing out adverts
Britain's Got Talent 2015 final: Vote reveals Jules O'Dwyer beat Jamie Raven by just 2% despite using 'stunt dog double'
Britain's Got Talent final 2015: 90 viewers complain to Ofcom about Alesha Dixon and Amanda Holden's 'revealing' dresses
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination
Migrants in Kos: Photos show real tragedy after Brits abroad complain of 'awkward' holidays
British tourists complain that impoverished boat migrants are making holidays 'awkward' in Kos
Michael Gove determined to scrap the Human Rights Act – even if Scotland retains it
Threat to scrap Human Rights Act could see UK follow Nazi example, warns UN official
Why this year's general election was the most unfair in Britain's history