Further emulating Goldsworthy, Brilliant's material is natural, although highly processed. Instead of "liberating" the materials from Starbucks, he now orders the wood coffee stirrers in bulk quantities to fill ever more ambitious spaces. The resulting works are large-form lattices, developed from an interlocking weaving system.
"It's a little bit like a piece of wicker furniture mixed with a basket," he said. "There appears to be this pattern, like a waffle weave "? it's structural. The visual surface pattern you're seeing is the result of how I weave them together. They pull against each other, creating a stronger structure."
The Lightwell installation was developed from 10 days in the gallery spent weaving coffee sticks together. Brilliant worked the whole time with the possibility that the entire project could collapse at any point in the process. The time constraint, the space of the gallery and the materials themselves all guided the unique final result.
"When I'm creating the work right there, the audience can experience the piece exactly how I have," he said. "It dissolves that boundary."
The Lightwell Gallery is the third location on his six-stop "Have Sticks Will Travel World Tour," following two installations in Charleston. Brilliant will next take his coffee stirrers to Memphis, Tenn.; Berlin, Germany; and Columbia, S.C. this fall and winter.
The Goldsworthy of the Coffee Shop Project opens at 6 p.m. Friday and will be on display through Sept. 25 at the Fred Jones Jr. Museum of Art, 520 Parrington Oval in Norman.