Damien Hirst Accused of Eight New Cases of Plagiarism


Artist Damien Hirst is no stranger to allegations of plagiarism. He’s been accused throughout his career, and more recently been the accuser himself (remember when he went after that 16 year-old designer in late-2008, then catching flak for it over the next year?). On the side of him being the focus, he’s fought through the accusations before, either by successfully ignoring and brushing off the claims, or just outright paying for it to go away, like in the settlement that ended the suit filed against him over his “Hymn” piece. Now it looks like Hirst may have some more work to do in explaining himself and where he got his ideas, with the UK-based art journal, Jackdraw, whose latest issue reportedly unveils eight new allegations of plagiarism by the artist. The Guardian reports that among the journal’s claims are that he stole the idea for his “Pharmacy” from a 1943 piece by Joseph Cornell also called “Pharmacy.” The journal (as does the paper’s coverage) also takes a look back at several already-known accusations, like that his crucified lamb carcass piece (“In the Name of the Father”) looks an awful lot like John LeKay‘s crucified lamb carcass piece, which Hirst likely would have seen when they “were friends and shared exhibitions” (LeKay also believes Hirst stole more of his pieces than just that one). So the questions are: will these new cries of plagiarism throw Hirst into a new series of fights and lawsuits? Will they diminish his legacy (thus far, previous cases didn’t seem to hurt the going price of his works much)? Or, because the news comes from a smaller publication, go ignore and Hirst will get away with it like he has before?