Artist Damien Hirst and controversy go together. The British artist has often raised eyebrows with artworks like the famous $100 million diamond encrusted skull. However, this time around the contemporary artist does not appear to be courting controversy. His latest project was designing the labels and boxes for limited edition bottles of two-decade old Somerset Cider Brandy.
How did this come about? There is a ten-year-old story to this one. A decade ago, Hirst had promised one Alice Temperley that he would design a bottle for her. Now, the above mentioned Miss Temperley is the daughter of Julian Temperley, a distillery owner. It so happened that Alice met the artist at a fashion show and reminded him of his promise to her. Hirst got to work, and came up with this ultra-colorful and eye-catching label and box design.
Hirst’s contemporary leanings are on display with regard to this label and box design for the limited edition bottles. I am quite certain that no previous bottles of Somerset Cider Brandy have been as appealing without the drink even being poured. The bold splashes of colors add a fun element to the much-appreciated brandy. Last month, the European Union granted Somerset Cider Brandy the prestigious Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) status. This status recognizes the status of regional foods that have always walked away from adulteration.
Only 500 limited edition bottles bearing the Damien Hirst artwork will be produced. Of these, 10 bottles of the luxury brandy will be auction off and the proceeds will be donated to charity. Sir Graham Watson of the South West Labor MEP will also be given a bottle, as a sign of appreciation for helping the brandy house get the PGI status.