The Visual Arts Gallery at the University of Illinois Springfield (UIS) welcomes the Chicago-based collaborative team, Industry of the Ordinary, for a provocative performance and time-based installation that consists of a firearm encased in a butter sculpture. The exhibit, Guns and Butter, will run from Jan. 22 through Feb. 21. The artists will be on campus Thursday, Jan. 31 to conduct the performance aspect of their project in the gallery, beginning at 2 p.m., and to later present a lecture in Brookens Auditorium at 5:30 p.m.. A reception will follow in the gallery from 6:30 to 8 p.m.
The prolific collaborative duo, comprised of Chicago-based English expatriates Adam Brooks and Mathew Wilson, are known for their thought-provoking performances that challenge perceptions of what is ordinary or everyday. They will work together in the UIS Visual Arts Gallery to construct a butter sculpture around a riffle. This performative aspect of the project is open to the public for observation on Thursday, Jan. 31, beginning at 2 p.m., and will continue until the sculpture is fully complete. As time passes during the course of the exhibition, space heaters will gradually melt away some of the butter, further exposing the encased firearm.
The artists, currently presenting a mid-career retrospective at the Chicago Cultural Center, recently created a butter sculpture of President Obama, and in another performance, toured that sculpture around the streets of Chicago while filming pedestrian response. The butter sculpture created here in the UIS Visual Arts Gallery will be created with the surplus butter that remains from that endeavor, still currently on display in their retrospective, Sic Transit Gloria Mundi. Wilson said he and Brooks want people to become less passive when they view everyday surroundings and to help them look closer at the experiences everyone shares. He went on to note that their work, which sometimes deals with topics like terrorism and infidelity, can be controversial, but pushing boundaries is part of the human experience.
Guns and Butter will open at the UIS Visual Arts Gallery on Thursday, Jan. 22, and will run through Thursday, Feb. 21. A performance will take place in the gallery beginning at 2 p.m, and the public is encouraged to attend. Industry of the Ordinary will present a lecture to address the nature of their work, challenging established perspectives on the familiar, and the intentionality behind the deliberate inclusion of a firearm in this exhibit amidst the current and hotly charged dialogue surrounding the topic of gun control. This lecture will take place on Thursday, Jan. 31 at 5:30 p.m. in Brookens Auditorium. A reception will immediately follow in the UIS Visual Arts Gallery from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Complimentary refreshments will be provided. This event is free and open to the public.
The UIS Visual Arts Gallery is centrally located on the UIS campus in the Health and Science Building, room 201 (HSB 201). Gallery hours are Monday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. For more information regarding America Behind Barbed Wire and future exhibitions, please visit the UIS Visual Arts Gallery website at http://www.uis.edu/visualarts/gallery, or contact the gallery by phone at (217) 206-6506 or email: email@example.com