Cheyenne Westphal on “The World Goes Pop”


As part of the Annual Guide to Galleries, Museums and Artists (A.i.A.‘s August issue), we preview the 2014-15 season of museum exhibitions worldwide. In addition to offering their own top picks, our editors asked select artists, curators and collectors to identify the shows they are looking forward to. Here, global co-head of contemporary art at Sotheby’s Cheyenne Westphal talks about “The World Goes Pop.”

“There is a very rich Pop art culture in Europe, which is often overlooked because the style has such a strong Anglo-American focus. It is a subject I’ve long explored, so I’m really excited about this show. The Tate is taking Pop art of the 1960s and ’70s global, looking at Asia, the Middle East and other regions. The show will highlight a wide variety of artists who I think are really, really good but who are not particularly well known.

“I’ve always loved the Icelandic artist Erró. In my career, I’ve traveled in Nordic countries quite a lot, and I am very familiar with the work made there in the early ’60s. Erró’s paintings are rare. Every once in a while, you’ll see one in a museum or, if we’re lucky, at auction. He’s got a very European take on cartoon images—quite political but also tongue-in-cheek and very funny.

“The show includes a lot of artists who are new to me, especially women from Latin America. The work of Brazilian sculptor Anna Maria Maiolino looks exciting. Here in the U.K., we have some fantastic Pop artists, like Gerald Liang and Pauline Boty, for example. Their work would benefit greatly from being seen in this international context.” 

“The World Goes Pop” will appear at Tate Modern, London, Sept. 17, 2015-Jan. 24, 2016.


Cheyenne Westphal is the co-head of worldwide contemporary art at Sotheby’s.