Let's Eat Outdoors Today, 1990 - 1991



Let's Eat Outdoors Today
1990 - 1991
2210 x 4115 x 2146 mm | 87 x 162 x 84.5 in
Glass, steel, silicone rubber, cow's head, flies, maggots, sugar, water, Insect-O-Cutor, table and chairs, tableware, condiments and food
Image: Photographed by Prudence Cuming Associates © Damien Hirst and Science Ltd. All rights reserved, DACS 2012


Group Exhibition - 2011
Royal Academy of Arts, London, United Kingdom
Group Exhibition - 2010
Haunch of Venison, Berlin, Germany
Group Exhibition - 1992
Anthony d’Offay Gallery, London, United Kingdom


“It’s like everything you do in life is pointless if you just take a step back and look at it.”[1]

‘Let’s Eat Outdoors Today’ was made around the same time as Hirst’s other seminal fly works, ‘A Hundred Years’ (1990) and ‘A Thousand Years’ (1990). It was first shown at Anthony d’Offay Gallery, where Hirst had worked part-time as a student, in the group exhibition ‘Strange Developments’ (1992). In 2010 it was included in Hirst’s two-man show with Michael Joo at Haunch of Venison, Berlin, ‘Have You Ever Really Looked At The Sun?’, and the following year at The Royal Academy, London exhibition ‘Modern British Sculpture’ (2011).

The vitrine is split equally. One half contains a steel barbecue covered in raw meat; underneath the barbecue, trays of maggots are inserted where the coals should be. The hatched flies pass through a four inch circular hole, so that the vitrine is reminiscent of the face of a die, in the glass between the two halves. In the other half the abandoned remnants of a typical family’s outdoor meal is presented, a cow’s head lies beneath the table. An Insect-O-Cutor is positioned above the table, it’s tray removed so that the dead flies fall into the food. Hirst describes the work as an exploration into human attempts at “trying to isolate the horror from our lives and remove it.”[2]

[1] Damien Hirst, ‘We’re Here for a Good Time, not a Long Time’, interview with Alastair Sooke, The Telegraph, 2011

[2] ibid.