Stephen Westfall

Born: 1953

Hometown: Schenectady, New York, NY

Lives and Works: New York, NY

Education: MFA, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA

Works by the Artist

Stephen Westfall Bio

About The Artist

Artist and art critic Stephen Westfall describes himself as a "Poppish, post-minimalist geometric painter." He insists that the unique way in which he skews and manipulates the shapes in his colorful, hard edge geometric paintings is the result of undiagnosed "ADD and symptoms of dyslexia." Instead of working on one painting at a time, he simultaneously works in segments on several, creating disjointed grids and vibrant canvases. Westfall’s paintings resemble semaphores, but their apparently simple patterning, upon closer inspection, reveals their juxtapositions and intersections of color to be incredibly complicated and highly considered, undermining the viewer’s expectations at every juncture. Works such as his 2009 oil and alkyd painting Soon use a repeating square motif to provide some sense of concrete firmament, while the X-shaped motif below, in yellow, red, blue, green, and white, shifts maniacally, destabilizing the image with kaleidoscopic movement. 

Westfall is the recipient of the 2009 Rome Prize Fellowship and was a Guggenheim Fellow in 2007, as well as the Award in Painting from the National Academy of Arts & Letters. His work is found in the collections of The Albertina Museum in Vienna, the Museum of Fine Arts Boston, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Bon Marche, and the Library of Congress. He has exhibited internationally since the mid-1980s.


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