Q: Introduce yourself – who are you and what do you do?
A: I am Erik Jensen and I make art from recycled computer keys. Most people don’t take care of their computer keyboards and eventually throw them out. I find them, give them a little TLC, and turn them into a beautiful masterpiece. Each keyboard has an individual personality. Their characters, depth, and color make the art even better.
Q: What is your background?
A: Having always loved art, I pursued a degree in Art Education, and after a couple of years of teaching, I decided to do my computer key art full time. I have been a full-time artist for two years now.
Q: How do you work?
A: I work in silence. I am deaf and wear an implant, so I have the advantage of turning off my implant so I am left completely to my thoughts. Sometimes I do enjoy listening to a podcast when I work. My studio is my basement, so the commute is short. Process wise, to create a piece, I first create a design. Then after collecting, popping, and washing the keys, I dye whatever colors are needed for the piece. I lay the keys using the design as a guide and make adjustments I see necessary. Once completed to my satisfaction, I get the frame ready and install the artwork.
Q: What art do you most identify with?
A: I identify most with found object art.
Q: What has been your favorite experience so far as an artist?
A: My favorite experience has either been seeing my artworks come to life with colors and pixels or the people I meet and watching their reactions to seeing my artwork for the first time.
Q: Who inspires you?
A: I love Jeff Koons, Nathan Sawaya, a lego artist, and Christo and Jeanne Claude for being so brave.
Q: What is the best advice you have received?
A: Life is too short to be normal and like everyone else. Be different and embrace it. The world needs it.
Q: What you are not working, where can we find you?
A: If I’m not working, I’m either with my family or at church. Having two littles running around keeps my hands full at all times. I love to cook a lot too.