Diamonds Are a Skull's Best Friend

Platinum cast + 8,601 jewels = $100M price tag
By M. Morris,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 2, 2007 3:10 PM CDT
A member of staff holds up an exhibition catalogue showing a picture of a work 'For the Love of God', a platinum skull covered with 8,601 diamonds, by British artist Damien Hirst during the launch of...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – The priciest work of modern art ever created is on view at a London gallery, priced at just $100 million. Death-obsessed artist Damien Hirst cast a human skull in platinum and encrusted it with diamonds, creating a piece he calls "For the Love of God." He kept the original teeth, he tells Bloomberg, as "a reminder that it's real."

The piece is on display in a darkened room at the White Cube Gallery where a spotlight plays over it, creating an impression not unlike that of a disco ball. The skull, which cost $20 million to create, has already attracted interest from two or three collectors, says the gallery's exhibitions director. Hirst's latest show opens to the public tomorrow.