Cover image for On the way to work
On the way to work
Hirst, Damien.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
London : Faber, [2001]

Physical Description:
232 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Central Library N7433.4.H57 O6 2001 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



'I want it to be revealing. I'll talk about anything you like. I want it to be truthful. Let's do it. There is no off-limits. I'm afraid of nothing.' Immediately recognised as a young artist with a brilliant, sordid and uncompromising imagination, Damien Hirst is the most celebrated artist Britain has produced for generations. The undisputed leader and originator of the dominant movement in contemporary art on both sides of the Atlantic, he is now so ingrained in the public consciousness that even those with only a passing interest in art are familiar with his notorious shark and pickled sheep. Gordon Burn met Hirst for the first time nine years ago. Both admirers of David Sylvester's interviews with Francis Bacon and Jan Wenner's interviews with John Lennon, there was always an unspoken understanding between them that they would do something similar when the time was right. The resulting conversations in On the Way to Work are electrifyingly candid. True to the undertaking Hirst gave Burn, there is no off-limits: here are Hirst's thoughts on celebrity, money, art, alcohol, sex, death, the North of England, class, crime and cocaine; his views on Marco Pierre White, Charles Saatchi, David Bowie, Gilbert and George and Lucian Freud. More than any other individual, Damien Hirst's art and life came to define the nineties. Like the generation Hirst has come to represent, On the Way to Work is brave, unpredictable, scabrously funny and corrosively intelligent. It is also a how-to guide to becoming the most famous artist in the world.

Author Notes

Gordon Burn was born in Newcastle upon Tyne on January 16, 1948. He began work as a journalist and wrote for several publications including the Guardian, Rolling Stone and Esquire. His novel, Alma Cogan, was published in 1991 and won the Whitbread Award for Best First Novel. During his lifetime he wrote four novels and several non-fiction books including Fullalove, The North of England Home Service, Somebody's Husband, Somebody's Son, Happy Like Murderers, Pocket Money, and Best and Edwards. He died of bowel cancer on July 17, 2009 at the age of 61.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 1

Publisher's Weekly Review

Those familiar with artist Damien Hirst's preserved cows and medical vrit exhibits of human skeletons and pickled fetuses won't be surprised to learn that at age 16 he snuck into a morgue to have his picture taken with a severed head. These and other revelations of early life come out in On the Way to Work, a book-length interview with the controversial Young British Artist conducted by Whitbread-winning novelist Gordon Burn. Modeled loosely on John Lennon's conversations with Rolling Stone's Jan Wenner, the book offers Hirst's lively, irreverent takes on Francis Bacon, McDonald's burgers, Freud, the notorious Brooklyn Museum Show and, of course, his art. ( Jan.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

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