Tag Archives: Art in SL

Art in Hats set to return to Second Life

AinHArt in Hats will be returning to Second Life in November 2015, this year supporting the inaugural Team Diabetes of Second Life season in support of the American Diabetes Association.

Found in 2013 by Quan Lavender, the initial event offered a means for SL couture designers and artists to present images of hats as statement of art, each with a story to tell.

In 2014, the event saw over 100 hats and their paired images displayed by designers and photographers, with donations made during the event (including a silent auction) going to support the work of Feed A Smile.

For 2015, the Art In Hats even will take place between November 4th and 14th, 2015 inclusive, with Emma Portilo taking on the lead as Top Hat Coordinator, supported by Chloe Seljan and Events Coordinator (particularly for European time zone events), and designer Kimmera Madison a Coordinator and builder, and Johannes1977 Resident as a Coordinator and managing entertainments which meet US time zones.

Art in Hats 2013

Art in Hats 2013

Applications to be a part of this year’s Art in Hats event are now open, and the team are looking for designers, artists, creators, bloggers, photographers and entertainers, as the official announcement notes:

If you are an artist, designer or creator of some sort and want to express yourself through hats, headpieces, attachments to the head of some sort (LOL) then this is certainly the event for you! Art in Hats marries art to fashion and brings about new amazing works! Enter now by using the Sign Me Up! link and completing an application!

Not a creator type? Do you blog or are you a great photographer? We’re also looking for you! Use the Sign Me Up! link to complete the appropriate application!

Art in Hats 2014

Art in Hats 2014

Do be aware that places are limited, so if you are interested in participating in, or supporting, this year’s event, you might be best served by applying sooner rather than later.

For further information and updates on the event, be sure to track the Art in Hats website.

Seeing A Bit of Red in Second Life

A Bit of Rd - MetaLES

A Bit of Red – MetaLES

Over the course of a century, Le Fantôme de l’Opéra’s  cloak has been thrown wide to encompass many retellings and adaptations in every medium – film, radio, stage, television and print – since Gaston Leroux first saw it serialised in the pages of Le Gaulois in 1909/10. Many of these adaptations, such as the 1943  film starring Claude Rains in the titular role, have themselves been folded back into the original story, adding to the legend.

And now, through until October 21st, that cloak has been thrown over MetaLES in the form of a tribute to the original story and some of its many interpretations, entitled A Bit of Red, by Kicca Igaly and Nessuno Myoo.

A Bit of Rd - MetaLES

A Bit of Red – MetaLES

Floating over the landing point on a series of large blocks (between which it is possible to fall if you’re not careful), lay key scenes from the story.  Most will be recognisable to those at least familiar with Andrew Lloyd Webber’s 1986 musical production (and short notes, indicated by the presence of a rose or rose petal, help give context to each scene), although the influences do go back to the original tale, and reflect some of the other many adaptations.

Thus we have, for example, the motifs of the Phantom’s mask and the opera house itself (although sadly, not the great chandelier); there is a familiar great pipe organ, from which huge spherical notes  float, and there is a the ruin of a boat, and an iron grate through which one can drop to a tunnel below, all representative of the story; the last referencing the labyrinth of tunnels and cellars beneath the opera house and which play a key role in the tale. Finally, raised above the centre of everything, is a dais on which Erik, Le Fantôme and Christine stand, separated by a mirror, symbolically broken on one side, whole on the other.

A Bit of Rd - MetaLES

A Bit of Red – MetaLES

Alongside of these there elements rich in symbolism, such as the broken cage. In it we can see Erik’s desire to hold Christine as his own – captive, if needs be – and also his change of heart towards her in setting her free. It also, perhaps, symbolises his own heart held captive to her and destined only to be broken. Or if you prefer, there is an alter, reminding us on the one hand of Erik’s attempt to force Christine to marry him under the threat of destruction and the death of others, and on the other of her love for Raoul and her desire to be with him.

Then there is the memorial to Christine. It both serves as an affirmation of Erik’s promise to the Persian within the novel that he did indeed set both Christine and Raoul free, and as a reference to the  2004 Joel Schumacher film, carrying as it does Christine’s married title and her dates of birth and death.

A Bit of Rd - MetaLES

A Bit of Red – MetaLES

In all A Bit of Red has been carefully constructed and does present an interesting reflection on Leroux’s work and its various offspring. The intricate design the weaving of the key aspects of the tale into understandable vignettes is undeniable. Nevertheless, in exploring, reading and witnessing, I couldn’t help but feel I was merely that: an observer. I didn’t feel as involved in the installation as I had perhaps hoped on my arrival; the Phantom wasn’t there, inside my mind, so to speak. Perhaps he’ll be in yours.

And as I’ve quoted a particular song from the musical, I will close with what remains my favourite rendition of that song.


Cica’s beautiful Strings and stories in Second Life

Stings - Cica Ghost

Strings – Cica Ghost

You may notice that my coverage of the arts in Second Life often circles back to the work of Cica Ghost.  The reason for this is simple: there is always something beautifully attractive about her work that draws me to it like a magnet.

Open now at Luna Isle, Strings is perhaps the most marvellous installation she has yet produced in a very long line of outstanding works created within Second Life; it’s a magnificent example of why I am so attracted to her art. And believe me when I say, this is not one you’re going to want to simply read about; – it is an absolute must see.

The initial tableau appears simple enough. On what might be the edge of a town, overlooking open country, or perhaps in the courtyard of an old villa now converted into little houses and apartments, a string quartet with piano accompaniment plays as others look on and listen with what seems to be varying degrees of interest – or even attempt to ignore.


Strings, Cica Ghost

Or is it really that simple? Look closer; this isn’t a single tableau; this is a collage of stories brought together in a single quilt of moments caught in time, framed by the music from the little quintet. As you look at the people gathered in the courtyard, on the balconies or sitting in their rooms, you can gain  glimpses into their lives.

I use the plural there not just because there are multiple watchers / listeners. but because the glimpses you catch of any individual or group of lives will change depending on where and how you observe them. Thus, each scene within the overall story is itself made up of multiple threads – strings, if you will – which combine in different ways to tell more than one story.


Strings, Cica Ghost

Take, for example, the woman on the middle balcony; is she actually listening to the musicians, or is she a harried mother seeking a moment’s respite and relative calm from the constant demands of a young daughter as the latter guzzles a glass of milk. Or is the little girl taking advantage of her mother’s distraction to help herself, and if so, what is it that is so occupying he mum’s mind? The music or something else?

The answer may lie on the balcony to the woman’s left, part of the same apartment and occupied by a lone man. Watch him closely; he also is not really listening to those below. Together his actions and the apparent air of pensiveness around her tell a story of their own.


Strings, Cica Ghost

Meanwhile, in the neighbouring apartment, a man sits over a chess board, the game frozen, his companion absent. Is she perhaps the motherly figure looking out of the window of the next room, or the daughter-like figure standing out on the stairway, both now looking out over the musicians.

But if the music was the cause for either of them to leave the game, why did they not simply go out onto the balcony of the room itself? why go elsewhere just to watch and listen? Could the young woman who has placed a distance between herself and the houses, standing alone, a forlorn expression on her face be the cause of their vigil? Or again, has she a story of her own to tell, and there’s yet another story to be found within the chess-playing family?


Strings, Cica Ghost

And thus it is with almost everyone we encounter here; what may at first seem a simple act – a glance, a hand upon another or a face at a window or even a book open on a person’s lap may seem to suggest one thing – but is that really the entire story? There are many threads – or perhaps I might say strings – here, which can be woven into many patterns by the eye and mind; thus we become more than visitors: we become passive participants in all we see; and quite wonderfully so.

Which shouldn’t be taken to mean the scene isn’t remarkable in and of itself without seeking deeper meanings. Strings is a wonderful piece of art whether taken as a whole, or studied at length. The characters inhabiting this little corner of the world all have their own personalities, whatever story you chose to tell, and they are beautifully designed – as is the region as a whole, filled as it is with Cica’s familiar touches and motifs. And if you fancy a dance, do be sure to touch one of the many stone cellos scattered around.

Finally, there is the audio stream, beautifully crafted by Cica to perfectly compliment and complete the central scene with the musicians, showing them to be a really talented group! I mean where else will you get to hear a string quartet offer a repertoire with everything from Queen’s Another One Bites The Dust and Bohemian Rhapsody through the likes of the Rolling Stones, Ziggy Stardust / David Bowie, Level 42, film soundtracks and The Phantom of the Opera, plus more, to arrive at O Come, Emmanuel?

These guys are wonderfully creative in their music – and Strings is a wonderfully created and creative playground for the eye and the imagination. Don’t miss it.


Strings, Cica Ghost

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Windlight Gallery opening with first fellowship awardees

WindlightSaturday, August 8th, 2015 at 13:00 SLT marks the formal opening on the Windlight Gallery, featuring an exhibition of works by the first round of Windlight Artist Fellowship Programme awardees.

The gallery is owned and operated by Windlight Magazine, the newest monthly magazine celebrating and supporting the art and photography world in Second Life,

Launched on July 1st, the magazine is owned and operated by John (Johannes1977 Resident) and features the writing and photography talents of luminaries Emma Portilo, Shakti Adored, Kara Trapdoor, Jessii2009 Warrhol, Vee Tamas, and Soairse Heart. I’m both honoured and pleased to be a part of the Windlight team as a contributing writer.

The Windlight Gallery is the magazine’s practical outreach to support artists and photographers. Occupying a large, modern building designed by Doctor Zimberman, it offers a series of individual display spaces spread across two floors, all gathered around a central full-height foyer area. It is home to the Windlight Artist Fellowship Programme, and the display spaces are reserved for those artists selected each month as Fellowship awardees.

The Windlight Gallery will provide free space to artists under the Windlight Fellowship Programme

The Windlight Gallery: home to the  Windlight Artists Fellowship Programme

The goal of the Fellowship Programme is to provide promotional and artistic resources to artists in Second Life, and is open to both new and established artists. Space with the Windlight Gallery is provided free of charge for a period of 30 days. Applications for space can be made on-line, via the Fellowship application form, which includes all applicable terms for the use of space in the gallery.

The August Fellowship awardees are:

Seb Arkright, Sandi Benelli, Ilrya Chardin, Bones Delicioso, Wicca Merlin, Richie Narstrom, Artemis Greece Resident, Bluesrocker Resident, ChrysteRox Resident, Ozymandi Resident, Roffellos Resident, SereneDean Resident and Myra Wildmist.

My congratulations to all!

The official opening will take place in and around the gallery starting a 13:00 SLT on Saturday, August 8th, 2015, and will feature music by Anek Fuchs. A formal dress code will apply.

There will also be a closing reception for the August Fellowship awardees on Saturday, August 23rd, 2015 from 15:00 SLT. This will again be formal dress, and will also feature music from Anek Fuchs.

So, do please come along, and hopefully, I’ll see you there!

Additional Information