October 28th, 2022 saw the opening of an extensive retrospective exhibition of art by Bamboo Barnes at the Akiniwa region, a part of the Akipelago, operated and managed by Akiko Kinoshi (A Kiko), supported by 3D sculptures by Kerupa Flow. And when I say extensive – I mean just that: Personal Aspect occupies for main gallery buildings, at well as featuring three “outdoor” displays of her work.
Hailing from Japan, Bamboo is, as I’ve frequently noted, one of the most vibrant, evocative, provocative, and emotive artists displaying her work in Second Life. She is also an artist unafraid of plumbing the depths of emotion and introspection – as can be witnessed in some of the pieces in this exhibition.
Bamboo began her artistic journey within Second Life in 2011, initially working with with avatar screenshots. In 2013, she became enamoured by in-world 3D art installations, a factor which dramatically altered her artistic trajectory, her work shifting to a format that often presents a 3D depth through the two-dimensional form of the artist’s canvas.
With this shift in direction also came an opening of style and structure to her work; there is a focus of emotional self-reflection within many of them, often expressed through the use of vivid colours. She also sought explore the more esoteric through her art – the nature of self; metaphysics; what constitutes reality; the nature of art itself – particularly her own art, and more.
Within this exhibition – which features pieces Bamboo has selected as her “favourites” from her extensive portfolio – we are invited to join Bamboo on her journey through art, a journey that extends from Second Life landscapes and reflections on the world of 3D art within the platform, through to pieces offering insight into her examination of the themes noted above, onwards to her original digital art and experiments with motion (animation) in art to offer further dimensional depth.
Art is never finished, just abandoned.
One of the many beauties of Bamboo’s work is that she doesn’t not offer her own thoughts on it; rather, she prefers to allow her art to speak directly to those viewing it. As such, I don’t plan to offer much of a personal exposition on this retrospective. What I will say, however, is that this is an exhibition that should be seen – and appreciated with the time it deserves; to hurry through the halls risks missing the depth of expression awaiting discovery.
In this, Kerupa’s 3D work is the perfect accompaniment to Bamboo’s. Also hailing from Japan, Kerupa shares that heritage, while her art plumbs similar depths of expression and theme.
Not to be missed.
- Personal Aspect (Akiniwa, rated Moderate)