Perhaps taking his cue from luxury retailers, Damien Hirst swapped dead sharks for precious stones this year, encrusting a life-size cast of a human skull in 8,601 diamonds. When the blinged-out head sold for a reported $122 million to an anonymous investment group, the British artist's genius for the grand gesture was confirmed (he later told Paradis magazine that his business manager felt they should have asked for twice as much). Hirst himself is said to be one of the investors, but there's no word on whether Kimora Lee Simmons is involved.
+Info: For the Love of God
Damien Hirst (born June 7, 1965) is an English artist and the most prominent of the group that has been dubbed "Young British Artists" (or YBAs). He dominated the art scene in Britain during the 1990s and is internationally renowned.
Death is a central theme in his work. He is best known for his Butcher shop series, in which dead animals (such as a shark, a sheep or a cow) are preserved, sometimes cut-up, in formaldehyde. His iconic work is The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living, a 14-foot tiger shark immersed in formaldehyde in a vitrine. Its sale in 2004 made him the world's second most expensive living artist after Jasper Johns. In June 2007, Hirst became the most expensive living artist with the sale of a medicine chest, Lullaby Spring, for £9.65 million at Sotheby's in London. On 30 August 2007, Hirst outdid his previous sale of Lullaby Spring with For The Love of God which sold for £50 million to an unknown investment group. 
He is also known for "spill paintings," made on a spinning circular surface, and "spot paintings," which are rows of randomly-coloured circles; these have been imitated in commical graphics.
During the 1990s his career was closely linked with the collector Charles Saatchi, but increasing frictions came to a head in 2003 and the liaison ended.
+Info: damienhirst.com/ othercriteria.com