New Exhibits Scheduled to Open in ICC Art Galleries in Mid-January

Two new exhibits open in mid-January in the Illinois Central College art galleries, located on the East Peoria Campus.

                Just Above the Surface, an exhibit by Veronica Bruce Woodward, opens January 14 in the ICC Performing Arts Center Gallery, located in the lobby of the facility. The exhibit runs through February 6. An artist talk is scheduled on the closing date in the gallery from noon to 1 pm.

                In addition, between, an exhibit of the art of Megan Kathol Bersett, opens on January 16 in ICC Gallery 336B, located in the Academic Building. A meet and greet with the artist is scheduled on the opening date from 2 to 4 pm in the gallery, including an artist talk beginning at 3 pm.

Veronica Bruce Woodward

                Veronica Bruce Woodward is an artist whose work explores the spectrum of landscape abstraction with an emphasis on the energetic undertones of a space. Her paintings are grounded in formal considerations and architectural remnants. Her works have been exhibited at Castle Fine Art in England, Gallery 19, The Nevica Project, The Franklin, Backspace Collective, Robert Bills Contemporary, Park Schreck Gallery, and at Aqua Art Miami. In 2012, she was awarded the ArtSlant Prize and has completed artist residencies at Threewalls Chicago, Bundanon Trust in New South Wales, Australia, and Nida Art Colony of the Vilnius Academy of Arts in Lithuania.

                The artist said the title of her exhibit, Just Above the Surface, has a two-fold reference. On one hand, many of the works have a key mark of a wide brush which, when held softly just above the surface of the paper, leaves a delicate, linear pattern and moves the eye around the composition. The thin lines of the brush indicate the physicality of the light touch just grazing the surface. This literal process of using a tool just above the surface embeds a gentle, whimsical, and energetic quality to the landscape abstractions and many of her paintings.

                In addition, on a conceptual level, the artist said she loves the idea of an energetic aura that hovers just above the surface of an individual, carrying one’s energy and emotions outward. She said she also likes the play on the notion of what lies both above and below people’s levels of consciousness. Following a sequence of decision making from one mark to the next, she said her paintings stem from a physical process of being present with her materials.

                “My energetic state and personal life feed the works,” she said in her artist’s statement for the exhibit. “Water, wind, sun, etc., are elements of the work, simply holding the primary concern of what lies ‘Just Above the Surface’ of things.”

                She received her bachelor of fine arts degree from the University of Illinois in 2004 and completed a master of fine arts degree in painting from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia in 2011. She has over 10 years of experience as an art teacher, teaching art courses to a variety of audiences including secondary education in suburban Chicago, as well as undergraduate courses at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Most recently, she taught high school and middle school art at
the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools in 2017-2018.

Megan Kathol Bersett

                Megan Kathol Bersett creates abstract mixed media paintings that visually process basic cognitive, emotional, and psychological experiences. These functions help construct an individual’s perceptions and guide their navigation of daily life. The current show consists of a series of small canvases of close but varying dimensions. They are made of acrylic and oil paint and paper collage. Shapes and space are manipulated, interrupted, and combined using camouflage techniques to create various types of intersections among different elements in the work. In-between states arise, where shapes don't quite sit still because of their fragmentation and their changing allegiances to their surroundings.

                Megan Kathol Bersett has exhibited her work in solo and group exhibitions at many venues across the country, including: the Center for Contemporary Art (in Santa Fe, N.M.); Hand Artes Gallery (Truchas, N.M.); The University of Massachusetts-Amherst; La Casa Cultural (San Jose, Costa Rica); The Anderson Gallery at Drake University (Des Moines, Iowa); McHenry County College (Crystal Lake); Jan Brandt Gallery (Bloomington); and RampArts Gallery (Bloomington). At Drake University, she served as a visiting artist and panelist. She was featured on, a contemporary art podcast, and participated in Lori Waxman’s 60wrd/min art critic performance critique at University Galleries of Illinois State University in Normal.

                She was recently an artist in residence at the Prairie Center of the Arts in Peoria and was featured in Volume 37 of Studio Visit magazine.

                She received a master of fine arts degree from Illinois State University and a bachelor of fine arts degree Truman State University in Kirksville, Mo. She teaches art at several colleges in the Bloomington-Normal area. 

                Hours of operation for Gallery 336B are Monday through Thursday, from 9 am to 5 pm and Friday from 9 am to noon. The Performing Arts Center Gallery is open Monday through Thursday from 9:30 am to 7:30 pm, and Friday from 9:30 am to noon. In addition, the Performing Arts Center Gallery also is accessible when the Performing Arts Center is open for public events. Operation of all galleries varies with ICC’s holidays and breaks.

                The exhibits are presented by the ICC Art Program and the Arts at ICC. The Arts at ICC has a rich history of enhancing the arts community and expanding education beyond the classroom. Arts at ICC presents more than 500 exhibits, performances, lectures, rehearsals, meetings, master classes, clinics, seminars, receptions, orientations, forums, auditions and tournaments annually.

                For more information or to confirm a gallery will be open at a particular time, visit or contact the ICC Arts and Behavioral Sciences Department at (309) 694-5113.


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