Thanks to art buyers like, well, Damien Hirst, the works of Damien Hirst have ballooned to extraordinary levels making Damien Hirst the most highly paid living artist, and Damien Hirst the collector of works by Damien Hirst, wasn't doing too badly either.
The cocky Brit also admits to few chinks in the old stiff upper lip, though. Going it alone this September and selling his artwork through Sotheby's made quite a splash. Coming the week of Lehman collapse and tumbling credit crisis dominos did not bode well for the bold move.
Hirst, of course, made out just fine. Selling a unicorn in a tank of formaldehyde called "The Dream" for more than $7 million, and netting better than $200 million over the course of the two-day auction in London. You know times are tough when someone with that kind of chuff comes back down to earth.