Take a walk in The Wild Side

Heartseed: The Wild Side, April 2014 by Inara PeyHeartseed: The Wild Side, April 2014

One of the things I love about creating in this medium is that you can express the energy so easily.

– Jedda Zenovka

Heartseed: The Wild Side is a Full Sim Art series immersive environment which opened on LEA6 on April 12th and will remain open through until the end of the month.

Precisely how to describe the region is a little hard – other than to say it is a most fantastical landscape, one which extends both above and below the water. So I’ll let Jedda Zenovka, its creator, carry the load, description-wise:

Animism is the spiritual belief that everything is alive. I try  to recreate this within the digital domain. Cybertech designs that fuse naturally with organic forms; water, sounds, plant-creatures, inter-dimensional entities that blend into the ocean forest ecology of my environments so that it is impossible to tell where one ends and another starts.

Take a wander  through a textured cyboriginal landscape which evokes healing emotions and crystallises into moving, living sculptures; descriptions of ideas and experiences inspired by both human life of aspirations and necessities and with the practicality of hands-on permaculture in the rain forest.

Heartseed: The Wild Side, April 2014 by Inara PeyHeartseed: The Wild Side, April 2014

From the landing point, one steps out in to what might at first appear to be a fountain and water feature of a formal garden; it is not until one is fully outside of building that one fully appreciates the sheer alienness of what is presented here: a rocky landscape upon which the strangest plant life grows, some of it seemingly part plant, rock, some of it sculpted into anthropomorphic shapes, much of it appearing as if it has perhaps evolved from underwater life, and has found a new home on land.

Look up, and you’ll see more strange  – if not bizarre – forms sitting still in the air or moving through assigned orbits; inanimate objects which are both animated and filled with a life of their own. Here and there electrical discharges flicker across this strange landscape like cybernetic will o’ the wisps while other plant-like forms flicker in and out of existence.

Heartseed: The Wild Side, April 2014 by Inara PeyHeartseed: The Wild Side, April 2014

The cumulative effect of all this is to create a dream-like environment which can be degrees be soothing, filling with the gentle chiming of prayer bells but which can in places offer s hint of something darker, such as the rows of odd television-like formations, each with what appears to be a disembodied head within it.

The dreamlike feel of the installation isn’t accidental, as Jedda’s description explains:

While our minds and imagination evolves into the digital domain, our hands and naked feet remember the earth and other elements from which we are made. Dreamtime in this sense is the crossing over of two worlds; vision becomes solid and solid becomes visionary. It is instinct and the heart which guide us into and through this journey. The freshness of water, the spirit of a particular plant or mineral, is crafted into new form; the artist becomes the living conduit through which such essences express themselves.

Heartseed: The Wild Side, April 2014 by Inara PeyHeartseed: The Wild Side, April 2014

Exploring here take takes time – several items are interactive (including the trained attack fish, which can be set to chase others!), and there are number places where one can simply sit and enjoy the immersion – a music stream offers a suitably cyber-istic background for those who like to have more than just the ambient sounds around them while exploring. A particularly interesting interactive piece can be found at the end of one of the pier-like walkways, where visitors can sit and have their camera slaved to a script which will either move their camera through a series of “live” views of the installation, presenting a tour of many of the different elements in the build, or which allows the visitor to select specific views of the installation, moving their camera directly to the selected point.

And speaking of the piers – don’t forget this piece extends underwater as well.

This is  quite fascinating build, and if you like your art with a twist of the unusual and a hint of organic cybertech, taking a walk in The Wild Side may be just for you!

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