Jarvis Cocker, Damien Hirst, and the Graves Gallery

Jul 18 2012

In January this year everyone at Museums Sheffield was floored by the news that our bid for Arts Council ‘major grant’ funding had been turned down.  We were devastated, but before long we began to feel heartened by the tidal wave of support which was building amongst people in Sheffield who really care about the cultural life of the city.

Sheffield might not have the clout of bigger northern cities like Manchester and Leeds, but we can count on some very loyal fans in high places. So we were chuffed when Jarvis Cocker got in touch with an offer to express his support by lending us the painting he’d just been given by Damien Hirst: Beautiful Morana Dysgeusia Painting for Jarvis (with Diamonds).  It’s not every day the lead singer of Pulp offers to let you borrow a picture by a leading light of the Young British Artists movement. We said yes please.

The painting was installed in the Graves Gallery this week, and is a really strong addition to our contemporary display, helping to tell the story of contemporary British art alongside work by artists such as Marc Quinn, Bridget Riley, and Sam Taylor-Wood. Damien Hirst’s work still attracts controversy, so we’re fascinated to know what visitors will think of it, but to make your mind up you need to see this painting in the flesh – the scale alone is impressive. The picture is set to be on display at the Graves for the next three years.

Our efforts to make sure Sheffield gets a fair share of national funding continue. In the meantime, we think it’s great that fans of the city are taking an interest  – thanks Jarvis!

Image: Curator Louisa Briggs and Beautiful Morana Dysgeusia Painting for Jarvis (with Diamonds) by Damien Hirst


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