This Little Piggy Went to Market, This Little Piggy Stayed at Home, 1996

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Damien Hirst

This Little Piggy Went to Market, This Little Piggy Stayed at Home


Glass, pig, painted steel, silicone, acrylic, plastic cable ties, stainless steel, formaldehyde solution and motorised painted steel base

Two parts, each: 1200 x 2100 x 600 mm | 47.2 x 82.7 x 23.6 in

Image: Photographed by Stephen White © Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2012

Exhibitions (5)

Group Exhibition - 2012
Waddesdon Manor, , United Kingdom
Solo Exhibition - 2004
Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli, Naples, Italy
Solo Exhibition - 2003
The Saatchi Gallery, London, United Kingdom
Group Exhibition - 1997
Royal Academy of Arts, London, United Kingdom
Solo Exhibition - 1996
Gagosian Gallery, Wooster Street, New York, United States


“It is [about] when you are in two minds about something.”[1]


‘This Little Piggy Went to Market, This Little Piggy Stayed at Home’ (1996) is an early work from the ‘Natural History’ series, consisting of a bisected pig. The animal is contained within two glass and steel tanks which slide mechanically “like a bacon slicer; slowly, tragically” to unite then separate the halves in perpetuity.[2] Titled after the nursery rhyme, the piece was part of a number of new works which incorporated moving elements, presented in 1996 at Gagosian Gallery, New York, in the exhibition ‘No Sense of Absolute Corruption’. In a similar manner to the rotating spin paintings unveiled at the exhibition, and the tri-vision billboard ‘The Problems with Relationships’ (1996), there is an implied endlessness to the movement incorporated into the works.


[1] Damien Hirst cited in ‘Like People, Like Flies: Damien Hirst Interviewed’, Mirta D’Argenzio, ‘The Agony and the Ecstasy: Selected Works from 1989–2004’ (Electa Napoli, 2004), 138

[2] Damien Hirst cited in ‘An Interview with Damien Hirst’, Stuart Morgan, ‘No Sense of Absolute Corruption’ (Gagosian Gallery, 1996), 26