Footage of Damien Hirst smashing up busker’s records at Claridge’s will be turned into an NFT

He recently burned his multi-million pound painting, but Damien Hurst first tried to destroy the art 12 years ago.

At the time, he was asked by busker and musician Daniel Spiller, 43, to help destroy his record before his eyes in the name of art.

The couple spent hours reading the records using sticks and pokers in their room at Claridge’s – one of the most expensive hotels in the world.

Now, for the first time, a snapshot of the historic day – in the form of a non-fungible token (NFT).

A week after Hirst burnt his own painting, a video of him destroying a CD by Mr Spiller’s former band The Broken Record Project is to be auctioned off as a digital work of art.

The couple spent hours reading the records using sticks and pokers in their room at Claridge's - one of the most expensive hotels in the world.  Photo: Photo of the stunt

The couple spent hours reading the records using sticks and pokers in their room at Claridge’s – one of the most expensive hotels in the world. Photo: Photo of the stunt

A week after Hirst burned his own painting, a video of him destroying a CD by Mr Spiller's former band, The Broken Record Project, is to be auctioned off as a work of digital art.

A week after Hirst burned his own painting, a video of him destroying a CD by Mr Spiller’s former band, The Broken Record Project, is to be auctioned off as a work of digital art.

At the time, he was asked by busker and musician Daniel Spiller, 43, to help destroy his record before his eyes in the name of art.

At the time, he was asked by busker and musician Daniel Spiller, 43, to help destroy his record before his eyes in the name of art.

NFTs are verified by the blockchain, which verifies their identity and ownership. They can be bought with cryptocurrencies including Bitcoin and Ether – the currency of the Ethereum network.

Mr Spiller approached Hirst, along with a number of other celebrities including Boris Johnson and comedian Hugh Dennis, to launch the controversial campaign.

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The British artist, 57 years old, was taken by the idea and invited the singer, who travels to Southbank, London, to one of the most expensive hotels in the world for a day.

The pair spent hours together destroying the music, and Mr Spiller said Hirst was enthusiastic about the act of holding the broken disc up his nose as part of a ‘hilarious’ gag.

‘Damien was brilliant. His generosity of time and spirit was incredible,’ said Mr Spiller.

Mr Spiller approached Hirst, along with several other celebrities including Boris Johnson (pictured who also took part in the protest)

Mr Spiller approached Hirst, along with several other celebrities including Boris Johnson (pictured who also took part in the protest)

Hirst's recent The Currency collection, saw 4,851 out of 10,000 A4 paintings ignited and turned into NFTs.

Hirst’s recent The Currency collection, saw 4,851 out of 10,000 A4 paintings ignited and turned into NFTs.

‘He spent hours talking, asking questions, giving beers, he was very welcoming. He loved the subject and seemed to enjoy the ugliness and understand the artistic meaning.’

During the process of burning the CDs, Mr Spiller said Hirst was ‘singing and playing guitar’.

‘The destruction of my art, when I created it in front of him… it seemed to touch him on an artistic level,’ he said.

‘I remember thinking to myself: ‘I’m a street bum but I’m living with the most expensive artist in the world, in his room in the most expensive hotel, singing sweetly on the -he listens when he reads my music. . very sure”.’

The film of the day was almost lost when Mr. Spiller found it in the trash he was carrying on his tip, only to realize that the bag had split open and the contents had spilled.

Inside were scraps of records and logs that Hirst had used to destroy the CD that he had also signed.

Mr Spiller said Hirst’s recent The Currency collection, which included 4,851 of the 10,000 A4 paintings burned and turned into NFTs, reminded him of ‘the destruction of my art’.

‘I was thinking of the big Claridge’s stove, the wood and the poker used to break it down,’ he says.

‘Destruction is a powerful and characteristic image of Damian’s brilliance.

‘Since we met on that day twelve years ago, I have continued to travel around London and continue to reign at the top as the world’s most creative and expensive artist – which says to you a lot about magic.’

The digital artwork will be auctioned on the musician’s website danielspiller.com next week, with those who want to get their hands on the unseen images, and the signed journal, able to write his current interest.

Mr Spiller already had ‘fantastic suggestions’ for alternative payment methods – including replacing his NFT with one from Hirst’s latest collection of polka-dot art.

‘Destroying my art was important to me, and it was also controversial,’ he said, adding that one day he might show other vandalized videos in the gallery.

‘There is something powerful about the dark and almost broken image of the destruction of my art.’

Other celebrities also participated in the protests during the same year. It has been proven it happened to Dennis, presenter Fearne Cotton and Boris Johnson, who would go on to become Prime Minister years later.

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Mr Spiller said he failed to bring the former prime minister in after he sneaked into a party with a friend.

Mr Spiller approached several artists to participate in his 2010 event

Mr Spiller approached several artists to participate in his 2010 event

‘I sat next to him and asked him if he would break some music, he thought it was a trap,’ he said.

Mr Johnson said he didn’t want to play pictures to spoil things, worried it might be taken out of context.

But soon, Mr Spiller said, he won Mr Johnson’s trust and the latter ‘got into the spirit of it’.

‘He was fantastic… He took the music out of my hand, clenched his fists, and finally announced to everyone that the record was broken,’ Mr Spiller said.

‘When the camera went off, he whispered that he enjoyed everything and said it was a great idea.

‘He’s wonderful.’

Mr Spiller now hopes the sale of the Hirst NFT will help reverse his ‘last bad luck’ – after his busking business took a hit during the pandemic.

“It’s been tough lately, buskers seem to be paying a heavy price – the pandemic means we’ve lost our Tube places, footfall is still down, and the cash-strapped community is making it even harder,” he said. .

‘Recent time? Yes, but I don’t hide the fact that I love what I do – sharing music with people is the greatest joy – I see it brightens their day.’

Mr Spiller approached several artists to participate in his 2010 event

Mr Spiller approached several artists to participate in his 2010 event

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