I recently had the opportunity to visiting a couple of galleries within Second Life which are owned and operated by two talented individuals who use them to display their own unique artwork.
The Shifting Waves Gallery is operated by Masquerade Snowbear, and comprises two linked skyboxes. The first of these presents Masquerade’s work over two levels – the lower “ground” level, and an upper mezzanine reached by a single open frame wooden stair case; the second is a large single level space around the walls of which Masquerade’s more recent work is displayed.
“I make my art for everyone, not a particular age or clique,” Masquerade says of his work, “I want everyone to enjoy some aspect of my art and hope its seen by everyone.”
His art very much reflects this view, covering as it does a wide range of subjects and styles, rather than focusing on one or two particular areas. This means that as you wander through the gallery, you’ll come across landscapes, portraits, still life pieces, ocean front pictures, indoor studies, and so on, each one of them beautifully finished and presented in a way that not only catches the eye, but draws the observer right into it.
Post-processing features large in Masquerade’s work, and to good effect. The pictures here have all be variously worked on such that each one is truly unique; some retain much of the look and feel of a photograph – in some cases perhaps an ageing photo – while others have the look and feel of a painting, be it watercolour or oil. All of them are enticing, and some are quite haunting in their beauty; during my visit, I found it hard to pull myself away from Shadopan Monastery, such is the ethereal beauty within it.
All of the pieces in the gallery are available to buy, and are very modestly priced; any one of them would be sure to grace any home.
Spiral Silverstar’s art is altogether of a different kind, although no less captivating than Masquerades, and he presents it within his own art space, The Spiral Art Gallery. A long-term Second Life resident, Spiral’s work encompasses 2D and 3 D art and machinima, and he often participates in art competitions and challenges in all three mediums.
For those who, like me, enjoy fractal art, his gallery space offers a special treat, as within it one can find traditional fractal art, fractal kaleidoscope art, moving, layered fractal art, 3D fractals and more, all presented in a light, airy space, utilising a building design by Yumok Latte which is popular among gallery owners.
All of the pieces on display here have their individual beauty, and most feature some form of motion, be it pattern-based, layered, or both. Unsurprisingly, but nonetheless quite beautifully, some of the pieces take you deep into traditional Mandelbrot forms, their patterns at times taking a hypnotic hold over the observer. Other pieces offer Droste effects which are again quite amazing in their complexity and execution, while still others offer quite marvellous scenes which verge on the surreal or the abstract in the most amazing ways.
Spiral offers his pieces for sale, again at very modest prices; so much so that those with a deep passion for fractal art could well find themselves repeatedly dipping into their account balances!
In addition, just across the plaza from the main gallery, Spiral has his “Freebies and Bargains” gallery. This offers a number of Spiral’s fractal pieces for sale at – as the name suggests – bargain prices, and a series of animated GIFs which are free to people wishing to take one home.
All told, both Shifting Waves Gallery and The Spiral Art Gallery offer visitors the opportunity to see (and purchase) pieces by two of SL’s finest artists, and both made for an enjoyable and eye-catching visit, so be sure to add them to your list!