Borrowing footage from television, movies, and sports events that serve as raw material and building blocks for his work, Paul Pfeiffer creates video, sculpture, and installations. Using iconic images of spectacles and celebrities, he plays with the canonization of memory and history, as in a digitally erased Marilyn Monroe or ghostly image of Muhammad Ali fighting in the ring, and asks viewers to question their own spectatorship and desire. Informed by, among others, Francis Bacon, Warhol, and DaVinci’s Vitruvian Man, his large-scale pieces wrestle with notions of power while the miniature works evoke intimacy. In a recent colossal production, he recorded a hired crowd of 1,000 men to re-create the sounds of 100,000 fans cheering during a World Cup match. In all of his work, from a lush sunrise and sunset shot, and shown, in real time, to a twentyfour hour a day, seventy-five day long piece, where New York commuters could watch a video of a nest full of eggs hatching and then growing into chickens, Pfeiffer is saying: pay attention. One critic summed up his body of work, “One can feel the deepening of love ­ and the holes left open by need.”
questions to consider
press release

Born 1966, Honolulu, HI
Lives in New York City

1997-98: Whitney Museum of American Art Independent Study Program
1994: MFA, Hunter College, New York City
1987: BFA, San Francisco Art Institute

Solo Exhibitions:
2008 Monologue, MUSAC. Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Castilla y León, Léon, Spain
carlier | gebauer, Berlin, Germany
Thomas Dane Gallery, London, United Kingdom
2007 Live from Neverland, The Project, New York, NY
The Saints, ArtAngel at The Junction, Engineers Way, Wembley, London, United Kingdom
2006 Paul Pfeiffer, MC Kunst, Los Angeles, CA
2004 K 21 Kunstsammlung, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Dusseldorf, Germany
2003 Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL
2001 Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY
Kunst-Werke, Berlin, Germany

Group Exhibitions:
2008 Revolutions ­ Forms That Turn, Biennale of Sydney, Sydney, Australia
Automatic Update, Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY
The Shapes of Space, Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY
Full House: Views of the Whitney’s Collection at 75, The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY
2004 Modern Means: Continuity and Change in Art, 1880 to the Present, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan
2003 Fast Forward ­ Media Art, Sammlung Goetz ZKM Center for Art and Media, Karlsruhe, Germany
Out of Place, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL
2001 49th Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy
2000 The Whitney Biennial, The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY
Greater New York, P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, Long Island City, NY
1999 Tete de Turkois, The Project, New York, NY
1998 At Home and Abroad: 21 Contemporary Filipino Artists, Asian Art Museum, San Francisco, CA

Awards and Scholarships:
2003 Artpace Residency, San Antonio, TX
2000 The Bucksbaum Award, The Whitney Museum, New York, NY The Public Art Fund

©2009 The Herb Alpert Foundation, All Rights Reserved. Site design: MINKWIG