It was back to Kultivate’s in-world base of operations for me once more at the start of July 2019, following the opening of the newly-named Kultivate AIR Gallery (formerly part of the Windlight Gallery).
Standing for Artist In Residence, the gallery brings together Angyel Resident, Anouk Lefavre, CalystiaMoonshadow, DreamMakerXDreamBreaker Resident, GlitterPrincess Destiny, Jamee Sandalwood, JolieElle Parfort, Kody Meyers, Maaddi Benazzi, Marcel Mosswood, Myra Wildmist, Pam Astonia, Sevant Anatra and Wintergeist in a broad-ranging art display occupying one wing of the galley’s lower floor.
Mixing Second Life landscapes with physical world art, monochrome with colour, paintings with drawings, abstracted pieces with experimentalist – and with just a hint of avatar-focused studies in the form of Pam Astonia’s eye-catching Profile portraits, this is a richly engaging exhibition that demonstrates the full roundness of Second Life as a medium for displaying art.
As is always the case with ensemble exhibitions, limiting comments to just some of the artists can seem a little unfair; such is the depth and quality of art on show here, this is perhaps doubly so. However, I must admit that I did find myself particularly drawn to certain pieces.
The five photographs of SL landscapes by Anouk Lefavre, for example, framing marvellous horizon images with an opulent use of light and shadow contrasts or natural blending of haze to produce vistas that pull at the motions. Then there is Venice – Italy and England – Time of Henri VIII and Anne Boleyn (seen in the banner image for this article) by Angyel Resident. The latter of these, I believe, captures part of Tahiti Rae’s 2015 LEA installation, Love, Henry (read here for more), but both offer such a marvellous contrast of style and colour, they cannot fail to draw the eye and mind into them.
Myra Wildmist, meanwhile offers an experimental piece entitled Material Girl. You’ll need to have your viewer’s Advanced Lighting Model (ALM) enabled via Preferences > Graphics to see this piece correctly, as the nine tiles use various normal (bump) and specular (shine) maps to produce different finishes to the piece.
As a part-time builder / kitbasher, I’ve long enjoyed using materials in various builds, and normal maps in particular – if used correctly – can add depth to SL photos where post-processing has been used to make it appear as if they have been painted, sometime which is demonstrated (if on a slightly exaggerated scale, given it is designed to bring the materials to the fore) within Myra’s piece.
Then there are Sevant Anatra’s paintings of Native Americans. From portraits to capturing a part of the Anishinaabe creation story, these are marvellous, evocative studies with (again) a sense of depth and life that holds one’s attention and allows the imagination to unfold stories.
And that’s just my pick of four artists from what is a superb selection of art, so do take the time to hop over to the Kultivate AIR Gallery and take a look for yourselves.
- Kultivate AIR Gallery (Water Haven, rated: Moderate)