Internationally-acclaimed painter Steve Keene unveils a newly commissioned installation, April 12, at the Bob Rauschenberg Gallery at Florida Southwestern State College in Fort Myers. Ahead of Thursday’s opening reception, we sit down with Keene for a conversation about the exhibition, Keene’s unique and prolific painting style and his broader approach to art. Having created more than 300,000 paintings in the last 35 years, Keene is hailed as the world’s most prolific painter.
Keene began work on this site-specific exhibition just a couple of weeks ago and it will be one his most ambitious projects to date. The installation is titled, “57 Miles Or 455 Furlongs,” and is inspired by Rauschenberg’s own retrospective, “The ¼ Mile Or 2 Furlong Piece,” which premiered at the gallery in the mid-1980s. The title refers to Keene’s prolific painting output. He estimates that if all the paintings he’s created since the 1990s were placed side-by-side, they would extend more than 57 miles (or 455 furlongs). Keene is also an indie-rock favorite, having designed album covers, and promotional and tour posters for such bands as Soul Coughing, Pavement and the Dave Matthews Band. We’ll also speak with Jade Dellinger who serves as Director of Exhibitions and Collections at the Bob Rauschenberg Gallery.