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Damien Hirst Keeps Striking A Chord For Charity With His Custom Guitars.

Artist Damien Hirst is known for many different things. The contemporary artist, who is often referred to as the richest artist in Britain, painted the floor for London's opening Olympics ceremony, created the world's most expensive diamond encrusted platinum skull, and has made us see ordinary things such as dots, butterflies and pharmaceuticals a little differently.

Hirst X Flea Spin Painted Guitars For Charity

Of course, this barely scratches the surface of the artist's enormous repertoire. But today I wanted to share with you his benevolent side. Hirst has been hand-painting guitars for various charities, some of which are still available to purchase, since 2010.

Most recently the purple Gibson Les Paul Goddess electric guitar above, specifically customized by the artist with the design of one of his most iconic series, will be auctioned off to benefit Cancer Research UK as part of the annual music heritage event ‘Sound & Vision’ at Abbey Road Studios. The auction date has not yet been set.

Damien Hirst and Flea's Spin-Painted Guitars Benefit Charity and Make Great Gifts:

As often happens with art news, it is quickly forgotten when replaced with the next hot story. Which is why I wanted to remind you - with Father's Day, Graduation and Weddings sprouting up this coming month-  that these uniquely produced charity bass guitars by artist Damien Hirst and musician Flea, the bass player from The Red Hot Chili Peppers, are still available for purchase. First launched with much buzz in 2011, the collaborative signed instruments come in hand painted cases.

above: Hirst and FLEA Guitar picks are also available.

Helping justify the expense is that the profits from the sales of the guitars go to Flea’s charity, Silverlake Conservatory of Music.

All the guitars are signed by both Flea and Damien Hirst on the back with the edition number punched on the base of the neck and the Hirst-Flea logo on the headstock. The Colour Spin Bass Guitars are created in a limited edition of 125 and have a spin design printed on the case as well.

The Multi-Coloured Deluxe Spin Bass Guitar (the most expensive) by Damien Hirst and Flea from Red Hot Chili Peppers, Unique Item, £50,000.00:

There are also Black and White Spin Bass Guitars and Multi-Coloured Deluxe Spin Bass Guitars available for a lower price than the Multi-color version shown above:

Colour Spin Bass Guitar - Damien Hirst and Flea from Red Hot Chili Peppers
Household gloss on bass guitar, 335 x 1175 x 65 mm, Unique within a series of 125
PRICE £10,000.00:

Black and White Spin Bass Guitar - Damien Hirst and Flea from Red Hot Chili Peppers:
Household gloss on bass guitar, 335 x 1175 x 65 mm, Unique within a series of 125
PRICE £10,000.00:

More designs than just those shown above are available. Here's a look at some of the others in the Other Criteria Gallery in London:

Flea established Silverlake Conservatory of Music in 2011 with his childhood friend, Keith Barry. Based in Los Angeles, its primary focus is on the youth of the community, to enrich their lives through music, offering affordable or free music lessons and instruments. It also grants scholarships to children in need.

Hirst & Flea clowning around for The Times:

the above wonderful photos of Hirst and Flea were taken by Pal Hansen for The Times UK.

To inquire about any of the Hirst X Flea Spin Painted Guitars email the gallery at

Butterfly Guitars
In addition to the spin-painted guitars, Damien Hirst has applied other art iconography of his, such as his Butterflies to guitars auctioned off for other charities.

above: This Butterfly guitar was auctioned earlier this year to benefit Cancer Research UK as part of the annual music heritage event ‘Sound & Vision’ at Abbey Road Studios.

above: this special custom Butterfly Bass guitar was a gift made for his friend and Red Hot Chili Pepper member Flea (that kind of counts as charitable....)

DOTS guitars

above: Fender Stratocasters were given the Dots treatment by Hirst to be auctioned by Christie's and benefit such organizations as the cancer charities Love Hope Strength Foundation and Teenage Cancer Trust.

above: A Fender Telecaster and an Eastwood Acoustic featuring exclusive Hirst artwork (Dots and spin-painted, respectively) were raffled off at the 2012 Strummer of Love festival with proceeds benefitting Strummerville, a charity set up by the friends and family of musician Joe Strummer in the year after his death.

Not just guitars, either.

above: Hirst Teamed up with the English band Squeeze in aid of Teenage Cancer Trust in 2011. The instruments - a Fender Stratocaster, a Fender Telecaster, and a Yamaha Tour Custom drum kit - were all hand-painted with the familiar 'dots' by Hirst himself and signed.

Damien Hirst website
Other Criteria Gallery

Charities mentioned in this post:
Silverlake Conservatory of Music.
Teenage Cancer Trust
Love Hope Strength Foundation
Cancer Research UK

Please donate

C'mon people, it's only a dollar.