He pickled fish and cows in formaldehyde and turned Blur into a Benny Hill sketch in the video for Country House and now enfant Terrible of Britart Damien Hirst is about to publish his autobiography.
Co-written by journalist James Fox, who co-wrote Keith Richard's Life, the book will cover Hirst’s early life in Leeds, and his development as an artist at school and at London's Goldsmiths College.
“He grew up in a pretty bad situation with his mother,” Fox told BBC Radio 4's Today programme. “He and his gang spent half their time housebreaking, stealing, criminality, and the rest of their time indulging their passion for art, which started very early on in their years."
Hirst's gilded mammoth skeleton inside a gold-framed tank recently broke records when it raised €11 million euro for AIDS research at auction. His platinum cast of a human skull also gained the artist many column inches.
Hirst says he is delighted to work with Fox and publishers Penguin on the book. “I'm really pleased to be working with Penguin on my autobiography, they are a very cool and creative publisher with a huge amount of energy and enthusiasm. They care about all their readers from top to bottom and are not afraid of pushing the boundaries.”