Damien Hirst’s spot paintings are some of the most iconic and recognisable works linked to the YBA (Young British Artist) generation. The concept of these paintings dates back to 1988 when Hirst created a mural for his Freeze exhibition which he curated to present works by his fellow YBAs.
Hirst subsequently created over 300 variations of spot paintings at his studio, which Tracey Emin compared to Andy Warhol's famous New York studio. Using common household gloss paint, each work has a different dot and background colour configuration. The titles of these ‘Spot Paintings’ often reference pharmaceutical drugs and these spots can be understood as references to tiny pills or analgesic tablets.