Saturday, June 12th saw the opening of Variation, a joint exhibition of art by Eta (etamae) and Imaginary Footprints.
Hosted at the Janus II Gallery at Chuck Clip’s Sinful Retreat, Variation is the second such collaboration by the artists I’ve visited, the first being Memories of a Forgotten Reality (see: A Foreign Reality in Second Life), which I found to be an absorbing exhibit both in style and its collaborative development – and the e same can be said of Variations.
Supplied without exposition by the artists, Variation appears to follow the approach seen with Memories, with each artist starting with a single piece before passing it to the other, the back and forth continuing as the piece gradually evolve in accordance with the perceptions and thoughts of the artists.
However, where there was a central theme to Memories that likely focused each artist’s thinking when working on an image, the lack of stated vision apparent with Variation has offered perhaps far greater freedom, with each piece becoming entirely framed within the individual thought processes and feelings of each artist as they worked with it. Thus, the focus of the art – and the exhibition as a whole, is the variation that marked the evolution of each piece.
The result is a collection of art that is broad in scope and potential interpretation. In terms of style and / or genre, there are pieces that might be said to have their roots in abstraction, others that lean towards expressionism or surrealism, and still others touching on abstract expressionism or digital etching. Not all are 2D or static; the added 3D elements presenting a certain depth, particularly those that are placed alongside 2D images they appear to reflect.
In terms of subject matter, the best place to start is to paraphrase a comment by Eta’s SL partner, Jos:
The only perspective that will be objective is your subjectivity.
That is to say, such is the depth to which these pieces speak, the only way to hear what they might say is to witness them for yourself and and let your own eye and emotions frame your perception / understanding of them.
However, with that in mind, I will say that I found Variation suggestive of a dream state – something enhanced by the overall environment in which Eta and Imaginary have framed the exhibition. A condition wherein the conscious mind is at rest and the subconscious is steady processing all that it has been a party to. Such processing can give rise to bright and dark moments (dreams and nightmares), and similar moments might be found within these piece, tugging and twisting our thinking and emotions into a state of variation.
Superbly produced and presented, Variation is a marvellously absorbing exhibition.
- Variation, Janus II Gallery (Sinful Retreat, rated Adult)