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Damien Hirst buys new Stiff + Trevillion Soho building

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Damien Hirst is to move into a Stiff + Trevillion building which is nearing completion in London’s Soho 

The renowned British artist’s Science business announced the purchase of 40 Beak Street from project backers Enstar Capital and LandCap.

Hirst will use the 2,500m2 building, which has five storeys and a basement, as his flagship studio from early next year.

London practice Stiff + Trevillion received planning permission for the project in 2015. Construction is largely complete and fit-out works are underway.

The building façade uses more than 100 different glazed turquoise bricks along with Art Deco style pediment and site-specific cast aluminium frieze and window surrounds.

The second-floor slab has been almost completely removed, providing a double-height space for Hirst to produce and display large works.

A raised mezzanine deck looks into this space and provides a gallery and breakout area.

Trapdoors and other openings in the building allow for artwork to be moved through it. It also has floor-to-ceiling windows at all levels, and interiors feature polished concrete Italianate pillars. A roof terrace creates an entertaining space.

Washrooms, inspired by the Savoy Hotel and Soho House, feature walk-in showers and Carrara marble finishes.

Stiff + Trevillion director Lance Routh said: ‘We wanted to design a building that would contribute to the vibrancy and creative appeal of Soho, while being sensitive to the surrounding brick architecture.

’The level of craftsmanship and detail in the façade, combined with the distinctive colour of the brickwork, has resulted in a unique building which we hope will be an inspiring workplace for Damien Hirst and his team.’

LandCap founder Rakan McKinnon added: ‘This new art destination helps to bring back the artistic energy and creativity Soho was so renowned for.’

The building is on the site of a former Edwardian-era police station, Police Section House, which hosted investigations into the 1942 ‘Soho Ripper’ murders which took place during the Blitz blackouts.

Hirst is perhaps best known for his 1991 work The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living – a tiger shark embalmed in formaldehyde.

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