“It is well-known that there are many faces in the world over the finishing of which nature did not take much trouble, did not employ any fine tools such as files, gimlets, and so on, but simply hacked them out with round strokes: one chop-a nose appears; another chop-lips appear; eyes are scooped out with a big drill; and she lets it go into the world rough-hewn, saing: "ALIVE!”
Mother and Child Divided is a floor-based sculpture comprising four glass-walled tanks, containing the two halves of a cow and calf, each bisected and preserved in formaldehyde solution. The tanks are installed in pairs, the two halves of the calf in front of the two halves of the mother, with sufficient space between each pair that a visitor may walk between them and view the animals’ insides. Thick white frames surround and support the tanks, setting in brilliant relief the transparent turquoise of the formaldehyde solution in which the carcasses are immersed. The sculpture was created for exhibition at the 1993 Venice Biennale and was subsequently the focal point of the 1995 Turner Prize at Tate Britain (then The Tate Gallery), the year that Hirst won the prize.