Blake Wood
Publish Date

The University of Illinois Springfield Visual Arts Gallery is pleased to present “Turn On Every Light,” a mixed-media installation by Peoria-based artist Heather Brammeier. This exhibition serves as a celebration of the human instinct to collect and reinvent.

“Turn On Every Light” will open on Tuesday, Jan. 16 and run through Thursday, Feb. 8. An exhibition reception will be held at the gallery from 5:30 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 25. This event is free and open to the public.

The will to collect requires unique organizational systems – many of which are improvised and invented. Brammeier was visiting a flea market in Buenos Aires when she became captivated by the collection of items organized around her: towering stacks of furniture; an intricate arrangement of objects nestled nearby; a chandelier made from an umbrella, festooned with shards of frosted glass, hung overhead; dusty and distressed antique items stood beside others that were refurbished and restored; hand-written signs nearby warned No Tocar (Do Not Touch) and seemed to express a concern for the arrangement of objects rather than their value.

In “Turn On Every Light,” Brammeier channels the creativity of savers, collectors and craftspeople. She indulges in a desire to transform objects into lamps and chandeliers. She explores the potential of plastic and water to diffuse, amplify and distort light and color, and she embraces the quirks of found objects to refurbish them in ways that combine the provisional with the highly polished. “Turn On Every Light” is a place of safety and escape, where visual overload brings pleasure and peace.

Brammeier is a practicing installation artist and professor of art at Bradley University in Peoria. She has recently participated in artist residency programs in Buenos Aires, Argentina; Villa Soriano, Uruguay; and Mannheim, Germany.

Brammeier has also exhibited her work at the Maeso Museum in Soriano, Uruguay; Centro Cultural Nacional in Soriano, Uruguay; University of Melbourne in Melbourne, Australia; and the Peoria Riverfront Museum.

This program is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency. The UIS Visual Arts Gallery is centrally located on the UIS campus in the Health and Sciences Building, room 201 (HSB 201). Gallery hours are 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday.

For more information and future exhibitions, visit the UIS Visual Arts Gallery website.