In the weeks leading up to the opening of the group show Irrational Exuberance on April 30, we are interviewing the artists to learn more about them, their work, and how they have been impacted by the recession.
Providence, Rhode Island
Sam Keller was born in New York City, and received a BFA from Rhode Island School of Design in 2009. In 2010, he co-founded R.K. Projects, a Providence, Rhode Island-based pop-up gallery.
Q: Tell us about the art you will exhibit.
A: I will be exhibiting a portion of a recent edition. Rainbow Flush is an edition of 275 replacement toilet flush levers given a “rainbow” finish in a process called physical vapor deposition. When installed, this functional work is meant to draw attention to, while soliciting a greater connection to the banal.
Rainbow Flush (detail), Sam Keller
Q: Has the recession impacted your art?
A: I think the recession has definitely influenced my work. Recent projects have addressed the systems in which value is assigned, while opening my practice up to manufactured and social materials.
Q: In your experience, do hard economic times hurt or help art?
A: Hard economic times advance art in ways which money cannot. I see the economic crisis as a kind of formula breaker. It’s difficult to separate the idea of value from art, however the recession has enabled a greater examination of these principles.
View Sam Keller’s flickr.