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Damien Hirst's Cherry Blossoms

The Cartier Foundation for Contemporary Art unveils Cherry Blossoms, the exceptional new series of paintings by Damien Hirst.

… And as much to say that we are far here from the sulphurous creations that we know him, obsessed with death and all that is related to it.

The artist takes up his brushes again, revisiting the pointillist technique to turn his paint points into buds ready to bloom. For this unique hanging, he offers an XXL exhibition with canvases that can exceed 7 meters in span, plunging us into a forest of giant cherry trees, a legendary tree revisited here to border on abstraction. Hirst produced a series of 107 canvases on this theme – all of which have already been sold to collectors – and we have the immense privilege of admiring around thirty of them here, exclusively in the world, for this artist who had never had an exhibition. institutional in France.

While some people quickly tire of the artist's repetitive approach, others, on the contrary, let themselves be enchanted by the voluptuous roundness of the petals, come closer to discover the artist's astonishing palette, daring electrifying tones such as bright red, tangy green or midnight blue. It is this unprecedented experience that the artist offers us, letting oneself be overwhelmed by the works, getting lost in the canvases until you can no longer distinguish anything, approach to observe the impressive masses of paint that seemed so subtle and delicate to us from afar. Dots that are the size of meringues, as if it took an entire tube of paint for each touch. Masses so thick that they will take another ten years to dry, then will crack over time, perhaps crumble, echoing the ephemeral nature of the cherry blossom, which falls without even having had the time to wither... Perhaps these intoxicating trees are not so much an ode to life as an invitation to enjoy the beauty of the world before it collapses without warning...

"The Cherry Blossoms are about beauty, life and death. They [the canvases] are excessive – almost vulgar. Like Jackson Pollock damaged by love. They are ornamental but painted from nature. They evoke desire and the way we apprehend the things around us and what we do with them, but they also show the incredible and ephemeral beauty of a flowering tree in a cloudless sky. It was enjoyable to work on these canvases, to lose myself completely in the color and the material in the studio. The Cherry Blossoms are flashy, messy and fragile, and thanks to them I moved away from minimalism to return enthusiastically to the spontaneity of the pictorial gesture." Damien Hirst

And the perfume in all this?

When integrated into perfumes, cherry blossom hides a very poetic message. All in lightness, it also serves to project us to the other side of the world, making us experience a journey to the heart of Asia, with a simple breath. Cherry blossoms are infinitely soft and very feminine. Linked to an ancestral tradition, they are timeless and therefore appeal to all generations of women. Their smell exalts a perfume that is both sweet and bitter. Cherry blossom goes wonderfully with all other flower fragrances, but also with fruity scents. Note, however, that its racy lightness is very different from the scent of the cherry itself. The evocation of cherry blossom in perfumery recalls the unreal atmosphere of a Japanese walk in the shade of these trees, on a beautiful spring day.

The Damien Hirst exhibition is to be seen without delay at the Fondation Cartier

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