Freeze, 1988

Freeze, 1988

Freeze was the seminal 1988 exhibition organised by Damien Hirst and friends, that marked the emergence of a new art movement in Britain, known as the Young British artists (YBAs).

Mounted in three parts, the exhibition was held over two months in an empty administrative building in London’s Docklands. Most of the participating artists were current or recently graduated from Goldsmiths College, and Hirst was still a student in his second year.

The exhibited works demonstrated the innovative curriculum being taught at Goldsmiths and a move towards a new kind of conceptualism. It also highlighted the entrepreneurialism of these young artists, leading to a series of well-attended artist-led exhibitions in the 1990s and eventually the support of art collector, Charles Saatchi.

The Young British Artists to this day remain one of the most ambitious and controversial movements in contemporary art history.