Unconventional Materials: Part 22 – Rachel Levin, Art Lecturer

Rachel Levin is a popular art lecturer who often lectures at the Bernard Betel Centre for our weekly Tuesday Lifelong Learning Lectures. In her series of ‘Unconventional Materials’ she introduces artists from all over the world using unconventional materials to create their art.

Creating Art using thousands of Old Keyboard Pieces (Part I)

What do you do with your old computer keyboard when it stops working You probably take it to a recycling center in order to dismantle it and be recycled correctly. Some artists use those plastic keys to create alternative solutions. Here are a few examples of creative ways artists reused those old keys from a computer keyboard. It might make you look at your old keyboard differently.

The keyboard bag by the Portuguese João Sabino, known as the Keybag, is a practical accessory. This crafty design gives the illusion that you’re actually carrying your laptop wide open, which may seem a bit strange to people who pass by. While this tote is an ideal gift for gamers and computer enthusiasts, workaholics would appreciate this as well. The purse comes in white, black, pink, red and a vibrant pink that definitely stands out. Each of the bags is made from 393 plastic computer keyboard keys with a nylon lining, the bag measures 30cm x 22cm x 50cm.


Artist Steve Coogan is creating beautiful sculptors and portraits of celebrities, using the keyboard keys of the computer.

Rocking horse made out of recycled keyboard keys

Nolan Herbut is a graduate of Industrial Design from the University of Edmonton in Alberta, Canada. As a designer he is inspired by his surroundings and different life experiences. His motivation in his design work is to create meaningful objects that both challenge and communicate with contemporary culture. Nolan Herbut’s keyboard bench is made up of 2,000 keys imbedded into a layered Baltic birch wood. Each key can be pressed and actually makes a clicking sound.


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