Dean West, “one of the world’s best emerging photographers” (AFTER CAPTURE MAGAZINE), has a highly conceptual and thought-provoking style of contemporary portraiture. His body of work has been featured in top photography magazines, art galleries, and received numerous international awards.

Born in small-town rural Australia in 1983, Dean’s love for photography began in his high school’s darkroom- one of the largest darkrooms in the country at the time- and blossomed at the Queensland College of Art, Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia. In Dean’s graduating year, he claimed Gold and Silver medals at the Australian Institute of Professional Photographer’s Awards (AIPP) and runner up for student of the year.
After graduating in 2007 with a Bachelor of Photography with majors in visual culture and advertising, Dean formed a partnership, which won nationwide acclaim as a high-end photography and post-production studio, Berg+West. Through clients like the QLD Government and SONY, Dean quickly learned to transform stick figure sketches into intricate composited photographs with immense detail and clarity.

Now based in Canada, Dean is about to unveil his last 2 years of blood, sweat and tears – a multimedia collaboration with New York sculptor, Nathan Sawaya. The theme examined in their series ‘In Pieces’ is how identity of contemporary man is strongly manipulated and commercialised.

Awards
Winner of the IV International Arte Laguna Prize
Fotografica, ‘Fabricate’ Venice, Italy 2010

Illustrative Photographer of the Year
International Loupe Awards, Australia 2011

Pollux Award | Worldwide Photography Gala 2011
Directors Special Mention, Fabricate

Official Selection Prix De L Photographie Paris
Paris, France 2011

Advertising & Fashion Photographer of the Year
International Aperture Awards, Australia 2010

Emerging Photographer of Canada
Flash Forward, Magenta Foundation, Canada 2011

Applied Arts Magazine Winner, Canada 2011
‘Fabricate’

Applied Arts Magazine Winner, Canada 2011
‘Around the Bend’

International Photography Awards 2011
Lucie Foundation 2nd Place, Fine Art Pro, USA

AIPP Australian Professional Photographer Awards 2011
Creative Photographer of the Year Runner Up

Visual Artist of the Year 2010
Africa Photographic Awards, Johannesburg, South Africa

Winner in the 4th Annual Masters Cup
International Colour Awards, London, United Kingdom

Applied Arts Winner, Canada 2010
‘Fabricate’

Applied Arts Winner, Canada 2010
‘Every Dink Counts’ QLD Government

International Photography Awards Honourable Mention
Lucie Foundation, USA, 2009

Australia’s Top Photographer Nominee
Creative Magazine

Advertising Photographer of the Year
International Aperture Awards, USA 2008

Top 100 Emerging Photographers
Saatchi & Saatchi, Cannes, France 2008

Exhibitions
‘saving daylight’ dell gallery, brisbane, aus ‘2006’
australian photographer awards, appa, aus ‘2007’
‘showcase’ palais des festivals, cannes, france ‘2008’
‘diafragma’ revistas judas, quita, equador ‘2009’
‘the new twenties’ idn, los angeles, usa ‘2009’
‘fwa awards’ potd, hertfordshire, england ‘2009’
‘fabricate’ arte laguna, tese di san cristoforo, venice, italy ‘2010’
‘northern lights’ atelier 688, toronto, canada ‘2010’
‘fabricate’ one800 gallery, toronto, canada ‘2010’
‘fabricate’ fornace di asolo, treviso, italy ‘2010’
‘snap’ ACT national ballet school, canada ‘2011’
‘process’ jam3 gallery, canada ‘2012’
‘worldwide biennial WGPA’ palais de glace, buenos aires, argentina ‘2012’
‘photo reload ‘ digital natives, romberg gallery, italy ‘2012’

Church & Fashion
Under the Sun
Olympia
In Pieces
Around the Bend
Process
Fabricate
Blanc
People

Hall of Fame: Blue Diamond Award for Dean West

Dean West: Yearning for the endangered rainforest

Perhaps somewhat inspired by Thomas Struth’s series “Paradise”, Dean West set out to document the intensity of the temperated forests of the Pacific North West, in the US with this stunning series entitled “Olympia”. Being very aware of how precious and less and less accessible a patch of nature has become to our city dwellers, in a society which is also consuming the world’s natural resources at an alarming pace, Dean wanted to very consciously take in every single luscious detail he could capture in these forests, and preserve them in super large scale limited edition wall prints, creating the most hyper real, engulfing effect on the viewer. Where Struth’s intentions and effects were more cerebral, West’s series is very different from this and much more “experiential”, with an almost physical and immediate impact on us. Impressive stuff whichever angle you look at it from.

Dean West: Dean West’s LEGO project inside the Openhouse Gallery NY

We already reported on the collaboration between young Australian photographer Dean WEST and Lego artist Nathan Sawaya. Now the Openhouse Gallery, Mulberry Street, New York exhibits their joint art project ‘In Pieces’ for the first time. 

 The preparation that went into the project was meticulous and took years. Dean travelled all across the USA in search for the most authentic everyday scenarios. He found the perfect motifs in California, Utah, Nevada and New York. The results are ‘Hopper-esque’ daily life situations that, in combination with Nathan’s pixelated Lego objects, are so heightened in style they seem familiar and strange at the same time. 

 The gallery context elevates this impression even more. Whereas Nathan’s Lego objects were only really visible on third or fourth glance, they are now supersized and have developed a life of their own, literally coming out of the photographs. 

 A white Lego cloud not just floats above a motel somewhere in Utah, but right here, in 3D, from the gallery ceiling. The blue flip-flops look as though they’ve been forgotten on the white plinth. And the red Lego dress seems to blow in the wind so realistically that you can’t help but duck so as not to get blown away too. 

This play with perspectives and identity is carried out so perfectly, that the viewer kind of feels like a modern Alice in Legoland.

Dean West: Laurels for Dean

Having already been hailed as the world’s best emerging photographer and bagging ABC's international photography prize, Dean West has yet another magazine singing his praises. This time it's fotoMAGAZIN Edition. The feature covers works spanning from his trampoline Medusa to the infamous Octopus attack. West's work is often steeped in historical references – including for example Greek mythology, Renaissance symbolism and Freud's dream theory. With great theatrical skill, he weaves a tale into every inch of his canvas, ultimately creating a world that is ancient yet entirely new to us. The 29 year old photographer is worthy of every rave review he has garnered over his career so far, and as fotoMAGAZIN themselves put it: 'Every Master stands on the shoulders of giants. Dean West is such a Master'.

Dean West: Lego or Reality?

Dean West's latest photo series 'In Pieces' has been two years in the making and it's been well worth the wait. This awe inspiring project came about from a collaboration with New York based artist Nathan Sawaya, whose painstakingly crafted sculptures have been seamlessly integrated into West's work. At first glance, the large format photographs reveal highly stylized and utterly beautiful minimalist American landscapes. However, upon closer inspection, we can see that an object within each scene is in fact made entirely of LEGO. Each image compels the viewer to visually deconstruct the work; what is real and what is LEGO? It leaves us questioning the nature of the world in the picture and, by extension, the world around us. The series not only delivers on a visual level but a conceptual one and is quite simply one of the most inspired collaborative projects of the past decade.

Dean West or: The art history strikes back.

If Hieronymus Bosch and Rembrandt could have children, then Dean West would be their illegitimate son. Somewhere between Bosch's fantastical hellscapes and Rembrandt's masterful use of light and dark lies the work of West. Whether it’s an avant-garde personal project or a commercial campaign, whether portrait or a meticulously composed setting: West draws from a seemingly endless repertoire of ideas, talent and visual drama. His Old Master parents must be very proud of him.