Ashtray Head/Fallen Empire, 1995



Ashtray Head/Fallen Empire
650 x 2438 mm | 25.6 x 96 in
Fibreglass, cow's head, blood and flies
Image: Photographed by Prudence Cuming Associates © Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2013


In ‘Ashtray Head/Fallen Empire’ (1995), a severed cow’s head lies inside a giant ashtray. Whilst the ashtray acts as a metaphor for a graveyard, the cow’s head references one of Hirst’s most famous works, ‘A Thousand Years’ (1990), a vitrine incorporating live flies. The title of ‘Ashtray Head/Fallen Empire’ (1995) alludes to the common revolutionary practice of beheading deposed figureheads.