By Scott Reyburn
Damien Hirst is to open a shop next to Sotheby's in London's New Bond Street, the artist's publishing company, Other Criteria, said tonight in an e-mailed statement.
The announcement comes three weeks before Sotheby's holds its ``Beautiful Inside My Head Forever'' auction of new Hirst works. The 223-lot sale, to be held on Sept. 15 and 16, is expected to fetch more than 65 million pounds ($119.5 million), said Sotheby's, which has its main salerooms in New York.
Hirst, the U.K.'s richest artist, signed a 10-year lease on retail space at the southern end of Marylebone High Street, the Evening Standard reported in February. It said that the shop will sell a variety of merchandise ranging from books and T-shirts to an 18-carat charm bracelet.
In addition to our shop opening in Marylebone, we will be opening a second space next to Sotheby's,'' Hirst's company said in an e-mail. This will be ready by the end of the year and will stock products which are available from the Other Criteria website, www.othercriteria.com.''
At the time of writing, no directors at Sotheby's in London or New York were available for comment when contacted by telephone.
(Scott Reyburn writes about the art market for Bloomberg News. Opinions expressed are his own.)