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Crisp, Clean Photographs by Sam Kaplan

A photo of a tube of lipstick embedded in a lump of rock


Sam Kaplan is a photographer based in New York. His crisp, clean photographs feature food, drinks, beauty products and other still-life objects on monochromatic backgrounds with stark, lighting.


A recent project of Kaplan’s saw the artist creating expansive landscapes out of food products. I love his pyramid of packaged cookies, and in another photograph, a deep pit of snack cakes. It’s quite interesting, the way that Kaplan is able to create such a sense of depth using relatively small building blocks. I wonder how long it took to put these assemblages together – and if they got eaten after the photos were taken!


A photo of a large pyramid of packaged cookies


Kaplan’s other photographs have a tendency to make the subject matter look monolithic and highly stylized. Unlike other creators of this kind of striking, polished photography, he rarely photographs human subjects. Kaplan's still-life photographs capture everyday items including electronics, sports equipment, pharmaceuticals and tools, arranging them elegantly as patterns, and in deconstructed arrangements of parts. 

A photo of a pattern of tools on an orange background

About the author

Dallas Jeffs Art Writer

Dallas Jeffs is the Editor of Artist Run Website's blog. They hold a degree in Critical and Cultural Practices from Emily Carr University of Art and Design, as well as a certificate in Technical Writing from BCIT. Dallas has a passion for speaking and writing about art, and sharing that interest with others. In their studio practice they are an illustrator and budding tattoo artist, but they consider themselves a writer foremost. If you like art, books and culture with a science fiction twist, check out Dallas' personal blog, HappySpaceNoises or their art on Instagram.

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