DIRK WESTPHAL is a multimedia artist. He has worked with photography, sculpture,
installation, music and performance art, at times simultaneously, blurring distinctions.
Westphal’s earlier work was performance-oriented. He conceived, organized, choreographed,
and then fought in apocalyptically themed gladiatorial spectacles on the streets of New York
City. He collected props and staged various other urban scenarios, playing dead atop
wrecked cars and playing the role of Conductor in his ‘Symphony of Horns,’ a performance
piece in which gridlocked drivers outside of Westphal’s downtown studio honked along to the
artist’s direction, creating a musical masterpiece.
In the 90’s, Westphal shifted his focus to explore and challenge society’s notions of beauty.
In an effort to study and expose the various mechanisms corporations use to shape,
harness, and exploit consumers’ notions of beauty, Westphal began collecting and
cataloguing contemporary signifiers, refashioning and then photographing them to highlight
their seductive qualities. His encyclopedic photo series from this time catalogue
prepackaged desserts, mouthwashes, cough syrups, and payphones. Westphal has since
evolved into the consummate collector; his recent work includes exhaustive visual studies of
toothpaste, nail polish, overbred goldfish, and plastic caps. These series are united in their
focus on artifice and mutation as hallmarks of our culture.
Westphal’s work is born from his everyday experiences as an artist in downtown Manhattan.
His photo series, in particular, have been inspired by daily expeditions to and from his
Chinatown studio that expose him to countless consumer products. Seduced by the allure
of artificial color and prefabricated beauty, the artist felt compelled to investigate the
mechanisms of consumer culture. Westphal’s imposition of his meticulous sense of order on
an array of everyday consumer products constitutes a political and aesthetic resistance to
mainstream culture. His work is a witty critique of our culture, cloaked in a glossy finish.
Westphal received his Masters in Fine Arts from the California Institute of the Arts. His
photographs have been shown throughout the U.S. and abroad at galleries including the
Tim Olsen Gallery (Sydney), Cat Street Gallery (Hong Kong), Baldwin Gallery (Aspen, CO),
Design Within Reach (Los Angeles, CA), The New York Historical Society, Art in General
(New York), Exit Art (New York), Mixed Greens (New York), Glenn Horowitz (East Hampton,
New York), and the New York Art Book Fair at P.S.1, in Queens, N.Y. His work belongs to
such prestigious collections as the Collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume
Institute (New York), the Progressive Collection (Cleveland, OH), the New York Times Photo
Archives, Rockefeller University (New York ), Pfizer (New York), and Sir Elton John’s private
photography collection, among others. Westphal’s images have appeared in a wide array of
publications and books, including The New York Times, The New York Times Magaine,
V Magazine, The Village Voice, The New York Observer, Mother Jones, Marie Claire, People,
der Spiegel, and Stern Magazine.
Matsui Fudosan, 527 Madison , NYC*
Mimesis, Baldwin Gallery, Aspen, CO.*
Crypsis, Cuchifritos, NYC.*
We Love, Maison 24, Maison 24, Bridgehampton, NY.
Under the Sea, Mass Moca-Kidspace, North Adams, MA.
Canal Street Boogie Woogie, show and book publication- 6 Decades/Boo-Hooray, NYC.*
Signal 8, Cat Street Gallery, Hong Kong.
Dirk Westphal to benefit Lancaster Museum of Art, Lancaster, PA.
Accessories to an Artwork with Peter Saville, Glenn Horowitz, East Hampton, NY.
9 Books, New York Art Book Fair at PS1/MOMA. Installation and book launch. Queens, N.Y.
Super Uber, Mixed Greens, NYC.*
X, Mixed Greens, NYC.
Endless Bummer, Glenn Horowitz, New York Art Book Fair, PS1/MOMA, Queens, N.Y.
Super Uber Extra Texture, Tim Olsen Gallery, Sydney, Australia*
Carassius Auratus II, Cat Street Gallery, Hong Kong *
Piscoli Fabulosi usw. Harley Baldwin Gallery, Aspen, CO. *
This Is All Part of God’s Plan, Blood, NYC.*
What’s Your Hobby? Curated by Beth Rudin de Woody, Fireplace Project, East Hampton, NY.
Animalia, Irvine Contemporary, Washington, DC.
Natur und Kunst Leisure Enterprise, Mixed Greens, NYC. *
Black and White, LTMH Gallery, NYC.
Artists of the Hamptons, LTMH Gallery, NYC.
Piscoli Fabulosi II, DWR, Los Angeles, CA. *
Fish Follies, Cordova Museum, Cordova, AK.
Dirk Westphal, Quogue Library, Quogue, NY. *
Crits Pix, Black and White Gallery, Brooklyn, NY.
Beasts on the Beach, Salt Queen Foundation, Water Mill ,NY.
Dirk Westphal, Tim Olsen Gallery, Sydney, Australia. *
Pulp, Lonsdale Gallery, Toronto, Ont.
Pretend Friendly, Artists Network, NYC. Curated by Alfredo Martinez
Call of the Wild, Susquehanna Art Museum, Harrisburg, PA.
Red, White and Blue, Spencer Brownstone Gallery, NYC.
New Arrival, Terminal 5, JFK Airport, Queens, NY.
Piscoli Fabulosi, Mixed Greens, NYC. *
Piscoli Speciosi, Arts Club of Washington, DC. *
Petropolis: A Social History of Urban Companion Animals, New York Historical Society, NYC.
Portraits of Fortune, Tim Olsen Gallery, Sydney, Australia. *
Nature Photography, Jay Grimm Gallery, NYC.
Toronto/New York,Angell Gallery, Toronto, ONT.
Dirk Westphal, DTW Gallery, NYC. *
Carassius Auratus, Harley Baldwin Gallery, Aspen, CO. *
Collarobations, The National Arts Club, NYC
Wet, Luise Ross Gallery, NYC.
Material Whirled, curated by Laura Lobdell, Art in General, NYC.
Collector’s Choice, Exit Art/The First World, NYC.
Grand Opening, 72 Grand Street, NYC. *
Urban Being, curated by Jay Grimm, The Limelight, NYC.
NY Gladiators: Shelley Mars vs. Hope Clark, Box Opera, Angel Orensanz Foundation, NYC.
Photosynthesis, Rare, NYC.
New York Gladiators: Live Combat for Total Media Control ,PS 1 Contemporary Art Center, Queens, NY. *
Paradise 8, Exit Art/The First World, NYC.
Site, in collaboration with Tom Sachs, Sante Fe, NM.
NY Gladiators Performance to benefit Fat Magazine at LIFE, NYC. *
Super Freaks, Green Naftali, NYC.
WOW- the Walls of Westphalia, The Clive Gallery, Church Stretton, UK.*
Dirk Westphal, NY Security Mini Storage, NYC. *
Cultural Prosthetics, in collaboration with Tom Sachs, Morris Healy Gallery , NYC.
Symphony of Horns performance, Centre/Broome St. NYC. *
Gotcha!, Momenta Art, curated by Donald Odita, Brooklyn, NY and Columbus, OH.
Extremely Refrigerated, Meat packing District, NYC. Curated by Alfredo Martinez
Artifax, We’ve Got Christo’s Daughter!! performance, the Puck Building, NYC.
Spring Collection, Sauce, Brooklyn, NY.
The Weapons Show, Exploding Sky, NYC. Curated by Alfredo Martinez
NY Gladiators - Easter Apocalypse, Petrosino Park, NYC. *
YGI, Fashion Extravaganza, Pseudo Museum, NYC.
101 Ways to Have Fun During the Apocalypse, Pseudo Museum, NYC.
Kill All Artists performance with Tom Sachs, Alfredo Martinez and Callum Greene, NYC.
Bong Show , in collaboration with Tom Sachs the Alleged Gallery, NYC.
Untitled, No Bias Gallery, N. Bennington, VT.
Enthropy, FPU 13, NYC.
Fired , A Late Night Comedy Show, Thicket, NYC.
Work in Progress, Crosby Street Studio, NYC. *
*denotes solo show
fair exhibition/representation not included.
Metropolitan Museum of Art Fashion Institute, NY, NY.
National Arts Club, NY, NY.
The New School, NY, NY.
SEI Investments, Philadelphia, PA.
Cantillon Capital, NY, NY.
Pfizer, NY, NY.
Kiitos, Los Angeles, CA.
Corel, Toronto, ONT.
Progressive, Cleveland, OH.
Rockefeller University, NY, NY.
Columbia University Earth Institute, NY, NY.
Time/Life Pictures, NY, NY.
Getty Images, NY, NY.
The New York Times Photo Archives, NY, NY.
Voyager, NY, NY.
Art for Embassies
The New York Times, The New York Sunday Times Magazine
The Village Voice
Der Spiegel, Stern
Travel and Leisure
Poets and Writers
People, Teen People
New York Observer
Future of Things
Soul of Miami
Barreneche, Paul. ‘Abode and Beyond’ Gotham Magazine, page 138, March 2012.
Brady, Sallie. ‘House Fun’ NY Spaces, page 72, May 2010.
Lamarche, Una. ‘Modern Family’ photo featured Hamptons Magazine May 2010.
De Guzman, Cicero. ‘NYC Surf’ Refueled photo feature page 66 May, 2010.
Hann, Christopher. ‘Barnegat Bound’ New Jersey Life photo feature page 66, June-July 2009.
Gladman, Randy. ‘Inquisition of Dirk Westphal’ Akrylic.com. June 7, 2009.
Editors, ‘ Sneak Peak with Allison Julius’ Designsponge.com. December 12, 2009.
Editors, ‘Dirk Westphal’ Habituallychicblog.com. July 22, 2009.
Editors, ‘Silently, I Begged’, Mocoloco.com. March 2, 2009.
Editors, ‘Fish Tales’ Designwonderland.com. March 24, 2009.
Castets, Simon.’ Dirk Westphal’s Fishy Dealings’ VMan.com March 19, 2009
Pakula, Karen. ‘Open Gallery- Dirk Westphal’ Sydney Morning Herald page 16, March 8, 2008.
Brisick, Jamie. ‘Faces New York, Dirk Westphal’ Surfline.com August, 2008.
Editors, ‘ Five Questions’ VMan.com. April 4, 2008.
Editors, ‘Body and Soul’ Traditional Home page 76, July 2008.
Scherrrig, Lasse. Stallschuss, Stefanie and Fries, Urs. ‘How to Understand Seam Carving’ Ubersetzen#0 page 94-97, October, 2008.
Editors, ‘Dirk Westphal’ Littlewillow.com. April 20, 2008.
Bernstein, Fred. ‘Water Everywhere’ Metropolitan Home, page 112, July/August, 2008.
Editor, ‘ Hampton Style’ Danspapers.com October 10, 2008.
Editor, ‘Adam Stennett with Will Cotton’ Whitehot Magazine June 2008.
Editor, ‘ Dirk Westphal- Photographs’ The Sydney Magazine February, 2008.
D’Aquino, Carl. ‘The Shingle Life- Lookbook’ Elledecor July, 2008.
Szabo, Julia. ‘Fin Artist’ The New York Post page 33, June 24, 2007.
Editors, ‘Next Wave’ Vogue- German edition, page 136, August 2007.
Arnold, Liz . ‘Color Conscious’ Hampton Homes and Gardens, page 86, July 2007.
Condon, Jennifer. ‘At Home with Carolyn Murphy’ House and Garden page 20, August 2007.
Green, Penelope, ‘Kips Bay Where Everything Glitters’ New York Times page F1, April 19, 2007.
Editors, ‘Introduction to Dirk Westphal’ ApartmentTherapy.com August 30, 2007.
Editors ‘Top 100 Tees- Kill All Artists’ Merge.com July11, 2007.
McCormick, Carlo. ‘The Board Man’ Paper Magazine, August, 2007.
Editors, ‘Super Fabulized’ Aspen Times Weekly, March 18, 2007.
Suqi, Rima ‘ Landlocked Fish, Worth Their Weight in 24 Karat’ New York Times, House and Home June 14, 2007.
Che, Cathay ‘Essential Summer Gear Guide’ page 17, Concierge.com ( Conde Nast Travel and Leisure website) June 2007.
Editor, ‘Dirk Westphal’ Lifestyleasia.com. April 19, 2007.
Leung, Janice. ‘The Planner’ South China Morning Post page 8, May 30, 2007.
Sun, Andrew. ‘ Surfboards and Goldfish- Of Course!’ South China Morning Post CitySeen page 2, May 21, 2007.
Shiu, Steph .‘Hook Line and Sinker’ HK Lifestyle Cover May, 2007.
Editors, ‘Arts’ South China Morning Post Features page 3, May 17, 2007.
Cudlin, Jeffrey. ‘Animalia’ Washington City Paper June 23, 2006.
Rubin, Nadine. ‘Where the Art Is’ Harper’s Bazaar, page 32, September 2006.
Suqi, Rima. ‘Strategist- the Best Bet’ New York Magazine page 41, June 12, 2006.
Editors ‘Word of Mouth’ Conde Nast Traveler page 30, July 2006.
Veis, Greg. ‘Surf and Turf, V Magazine, Spring 2006.
Kilgannon, Corey. ‘Art for Catching the Eye and Waves’ New York Times, October 17, 2006
Che, Cathay. ‘ Express Lane’ TimeOut, New York. July 27 , 2006.
Hastie, Amelie. ‘New York Shelf Life- Dirk Westphal- Acts of Preservation’ Journal of Visual Culture page 53-74. Spring 2005.
Valdez, Sarah. ‘Dirk Westphal at Mixed Greens’, Art in America page 129-130 February, 2005.
Petley, William. ‘Mandy’s Mad Dash’ The Sun Herald February 6, 2005.
Editors, ‘Open Gallery Dirk Westphal’ Sydney Morning Herald, February 2, 2005.
Ernst, Eric. ‘Perspectives’ South Hampton Press, September 15 , 2005.
Christofori, Ralf. ‘Die Gottliche Linke’ der Spiegel originally printed in Monopol, July 2005.
Editors Pick, ‘WaterWorks’ New York Sun, July 15, 2004.
Park, Sean.‘ World Artist’ Art Price page 91-95 July, 2004.
Editor, ‘Now for Some Real Talent’ The Art Newspaper page 29 March, 2004.
Reed, John. ‘Dirk Westphal’ NY Critics Pick, Artforum.com. July 2004.
Robbins, Sarah. ‘Dirk Westphal-Artist’ Gothamist.com interview August, 2004.
Dawson, Jessica. ‘Mr. Westphal’s Fish Shtick’’ The Washington Post February, 2004.
Szabo, Julia. ‘Art-a- Fish-ionado’ The New York Post July 25, 2004.
Editors, ‘Dirk Westphal- Artist’ Gothamist.com August 4, 2004.
Petley, William. ‘A List’ Sydney Sun Herald January, 26 2003.
Cohen, David. ‘Nature Photography’ The New York Sun July 31, 2003.
Harris, Susan. ‘Material Whirled’ Art in General March, 2001.
‘Editor, ‘Dirk Westphal Rude Order’ Borderlines page 43 July, 1998.
Horwitz-Whitmore, Ina ‘Jeffrey Show is a Dessert Delight’ Bexley this Week page 5 Dec 15, 1997.
Turner, Grady. Dirk Westphal at NYC Mini Storage’, Art in America, Oct, 1997.
Frenz, Sophie. ‘NY Artist gets His Just Desserts’the Messenger cover feature , Dec 15, 1997.
Editors, ‘Review’ WorldArt page 91, February,1996.
Holyfield, Joe.‘New York Gladiators’ Fat Magazine page 42. Winter, 1996.
Stitelman ,Paul. ‘No Bias Tacckles Tough Issues’ North Bennington Banner, October 6, 1994.
Huffman, Dwight. ‘911’ Manhattan File page 60, September, 1995.
Cessna, Walter. ‘Feature’ Stop Magazine page 63, vol.4, 1991.
Editor ‘ Feature’ Art Express pages10-11, September 1990.
Gamboa, Harry ‘Social Afterimages’ High performance Magazine page 46, Fall 1989.
Ochoa, Laurie.‘ Previews’ Los Angeles Times, March 24, 1989.