Though based in New York City, artist and designer Sam Stewart, originally from North Carolina, taps deep into the suburban subconscious in his eclectic work. Fitness culture, Fisher Price, Penny Marshall’s movie Big, 90s TV aesthetics, and other such American references inform Stewart’s playful and mostly functional sculptures — sofas, stools, lights, etc. — as do, less obviously, Italian design grands such as Anna Castelli Ferrieri, Enzo Mari, or Aldo Rossi. Popular in art-world households from New York to L.A., Stewart’s objects seem cheerful at the outset, but look more closely and the unorthodox mixing of materials and the obsessive attention to detail reveal a darker face — the flipside of a flailing American Dream. Stewart’s current exhibition Daisy Chain is on view at Volume Gallery in Chicago, closing October 29, 2022.