Eupalinos Ugajin’s Avaloir in Second Life

Avaloir

Avaloir (which might be translated as “throat”, or more usually a device used to collect run-off water  – that is a drain) is the title of what is perhaps best described as something of a retrospective installation of various works by Eupalinos Ugajin – or as Eupa describes it, when “random ideas met a playground”.

Those familiar with Eupa’s work will know that it covers a broad canvas, often containing humour, whimsy, a little self-deprecation, which can be mixed with social commentary, imaginative projection worth of the likes of Gilliam, and an artistic flair that can quite captivate the eye and mind.

Avaloir

It’s hard to say which of these boxes one might tick when it comes to Avaloir, but given the description and the majority of the pieces presented, I’d sway more towards the whimsy end of the scale than anywhere else.

A journey – and it is a journey – commences at a rather dark arrival point high in the sky. from here one can teleport to a number of destinations within the region, some on the ground and some in the air. For those who are familiar with Eupa’s work, some (all?) of the destinations will offer a change to renew acquaintances with various past pieces. Most notably, perhaps, are elements from Taxy! to the Zircus, which first appeared in 2014 (you can read more about it here).

Avaloir

Wonderfully Dada-esque in presentation, with a twist of the abstract, four elements from Zircus. Be prepared to mouse around for things to sit on, click on and generally have fun with. You might find yourself riding a spiralling mandolin, wearing cubed boxing gloves and sparring a star-like punching bag, engaging in a little artistic expression with a paint brush and a … hair dryer … and more besides.

Down on the ground  can be found the very interactive The Plant and also Eupa’s giant water / strawberry powered catapult (more here), only this time without its accompanying tower target. There’s also The Concrete Kite, and a whole lot more – some interactive, some observable. Getting around is predominantly achieved using the teleport cubes located at each of the major elements of the installation, although you can also fly from point to point at ground level.

Avaloir

Quantifying Avaloir  isn’t the point. Experiencing it is – so as noted above, make sure you do mouse around, click, try, and be prepared to walk into things. Do make sure, as well, that you have local sounds enabled, as this is very much an aural experience as well as an interactive one.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, after spending time at Moor the Wind, I’ve got an unquenchable desire to listen to Glenn Miller and his orchestra….

SLurl Details

  • Avaloir (Ravage, rated: Moderate)
Advertisements

The Colour of Unspoken Words in Second Life

Nitroglobus Roof Gallery: The Colour of Unspoken Words

Officially opening on Thursday, May 24th, 2018 at 12:00 noon SLT, is the latest exhibition at Nitroglobus Roof Gallery, curated by curated by Dido Haas.

One of the reasons I return to this gallery so often is Dido’s ability to inviting artists to exhibit who have a talent to provoke the mind, give rise to feelings, and give us pause for contemplation with their art. In this The Colour of Unspoken Words by Natalia Serenade is no exception.

“Looking around me I’ve been wondering why at certain moments there’s silence and no words are spoken,” Natalia says in her introductory notes. “Where do all these unspoken words go? Do they disappear in nowhere, get stuck in our throats, or are they flying away like birds? When this happens you realise how much silence there really is.”

Nitroglobus Roof Gallery: The Colour of Unspoken Words

She continues, “I want to paint the silence, the words not spoken, the freedom, thoughts swirling around me, the desire, the joy, the fear, the pain; AND there is my mind that is thinking constantly as it’s always filled with ideas and I have no choice but to create. Putting the colours together, with many cheerful tones, I will colour the day before it gets dark. So, let’s make today the most colourful of days.”

The result is 16 images of a distinctly abstract tone, utilising a measured approach to tone and colour which are both unique and also rich in emotional content. This might be hinted at when looking at a specific painting and then given form by its title, or it might be clear from the lines of an image without the need to reference its name.

In the latter category, I’d point to the likes of A Broken Heart Can’t Bare To Speak and If You Would Know… Then there ar pieces which seem to contain subtext within them: Someone hears every unspoken word and Reborn, both of which can offer up at least two potential narratives within their lines. In all of them the use of colour plays an important role if revealing their meaning and story: the colours used, their proportions relative to one another, their individual prominence in an image.

Nitroglobus Roof Gallery: The Colour of Unspoken Words

“Some people only speak when their words are more beautiful than the silence, some hide their words because of shyness,” Natalia says of the exhibition. In these paintings she brings all of those words and the silence in which they can exist, colourfully to life.

SLurl Details

An artistic expression of philosophy in Second Life

DiXmiX Gallery – Giovanna Cerise

Clinamen (clīnāre, to incline), is the name Roman poet and philosopher Titus Lucretius Carus gave to the unpredictable swerve of atoms, as a means of defending the Epicurian view of atomism. It is also the title Giovanna Cerise has chosen for her latest installation, now open at DiXmiX Gallery (you’ll find it in the The Atom club / event space within the gallery building).

Clinamen is the second recent exhibition by Giovanna which offers a philosophical lean (no pun intended), following as it does From the Worlds to the World (see here for more). It’s a piece that has broad philosophical foundations. There is Lucretius, as noted above, and the ancient philosophical science of atomism – the belief that nature consists pure of atoms and their surrounding void, and that everything that exists or occurs is the result of the atoms colliding, rebounding, and becoming entangled with one another as they travel through that void. Most notably, the piece is founded on the ideal of free will, as put forward by the Greek philosopher and science thinker, Epicurus.

DiXmiX Gallery – Giovanna Cerise

Epicurus was an atomist. However, he saw atomism as espoused by earlier thinkers such as Democritus as being to regulated. They believed atoms could only travel in straight lines. This meant that no matter how atoms struck one another or how many times they rebounded from one another, their paths were all pre-determined. Epicurus found this determinism to be too confining, as it left no room for free will. So instead, he believed the motion of some atoms could actually exhibit a “swerve” (parenklisis in Greek, clinamen in Latin), making their paths more unpredictable, thus reaffirming the role of free will.

Within her exhibition, Giovana offers a range of three-dimensional forms and structures. In the one hand, these are rigid, almost geometric in shape, offering a reflection of the deterministic element of atomism. Yet within them, edges are blurred and hard to see, while the geometry of some contain more natural, extruded forms while others have rippled, flowing surfaces. They cannot be the product of purely straight-line, deterministic flight, and so they reflect parenklisis and the more Epicurean view of atomism.

DiXmiX Gallery – Giovanna Cerise

This Epicurean view is ultimately born witness to by our own reactions to the installation. How we each chose to see and interpret / re-interpret the structures and forms presented bears witness to the exercise of our own free will.

In this way Clinamen is an intriguing play on art and philosophy; an exhibit where subjective reaction really does play an active role in perceiving the installation and the ideas on which it is founded, simply because doing so is an exercise in the application of free will.

SLurl Details

Silas Merlin at LEA 14

Silas Merlin LEA 14

“There are experiments and exhibits inside buildings,” Artist and sculptor Silas Merlin says of his installation at LEA 14. “It’s a collection of the things I happen to be building this semester, so there’s no specific theme; but I do have LEA in mind whatever I do, so I think everything is in theme in that respect.”

It’s certainly an intriguing environment, bringing together Silas’ gift for 3D sculpture and his pastel artwork in a place where exploration is encouraged – indeed required, if one is to see everything. It is also a place which includes certain nods to others here and there, be they intentional or otherwise; with the intentional ones offered a little tongue-in-cheek and without rancour.

Silas Merlin LEA 14

The landing point to the installation is located in a tall tower sitting just offshore to the rest of the build. This tower contains the first of Silas’ experiments: the use of a cubemap and a 360-degree image to create a reflective hemisphere on the stone floor (you’ll need to have you viewer’s Advanced Lighting Model (ALM) enabled via Preferences > Graphics in order to see the reflection, otherwise the hemisphere will simply appear to be a black object).

Getting to the rest of the installation is perhaps best done by flying from the landing point. A rugged landscape, with a ground pattern and plants which are in places mindful of Cica Ghost’s designs, this is a place littered with buildings and ruins, many of which look to have been extruded from living rock rther than constructed. Some rise like the towers of a castle, others seem to have echoes of Hindu or Aztec architecture, and others are far more free-form.

Silas Merlin LEA 14

Many of these structures have elements inside or on them. These range from experiments with projectors and projected lights  – so again, keep ALM enabled during your visit – to little vignettes of characters from J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan (as seen through the 1953 lens of Walt Disney Pictures) to places to sit down and relax, and so on.

The Peter Pan elements can be found in a little scene featuring the Darling family, and  a charming little diorama featuring some of the principal characters – Pan himself, Hook, Tiger Lily, the crocodile, the alarm clock, etc. Larger versions of some of the characters can also be found dotted about the landscape, with Hook’s ship sitting in a small bay.

Silas Merlin LEA 14

Two of the larger structures within the landscape are particularly engaging, albeit for different reasons. The first takes form of a temple with a somewhat Hindu styling to it. It has been raised in recognition of a certain – controversial, shall we say – artist who has not had the best of relationships with the LEA, being s known for her … disruptive … influence.

“She seems to target LEA artists,” Silas playfully said of the artist concerned, “So I thought it would be fun to have a temple with offerings to appease the angry goddess!”

Silas Merlin LEA 14

The second building offers a selection of pastel drawings by Silas. However, these are very different to his usual studies. Predominantly black-and-white, they have something of a dark, haunting tone to them, with even the colour paintings hinting at spirits and the supernatural.

A part of the installation that may not be obvious to visitors sits at 3021 metres in the air. Here, on a platform sits a small ghost town of buildings – some of which reminded me of some of the structures in Silas’ Felsenmeer experience in Sansar.  It sits among a number of platforms containing unfinished elements, and offer another point for exploration, even if you do need to map teleport your way up to it.

Silas Merlin LEA 14

A curious but engaging mix of Silas’ work, LEA 14 will remain open to visitors through until the end of June.

SLurl Details

Touring the Raglan Shire Artwalk 2018

Raglan Shire Artwalk 2018

Raglan Shire, Second Life’s Tiny community once again throws open its doors to people from across the grid as participating artists and visitors to the annual Raglan Shire Artwalk.

This year marks the 13th Artwalk, which opened on Sunday, May 13th, and runs through until Sunday, June 17th. 2018. The event offers an opportunity not just to appreciate a huge range of art from both the physical and digital worlds, but to also tour the Shire regions and enjoy the hospitality of the Raglan Shire community.

Raglan Shire Artwalk: CybeleMoon (Hana Hoobinoo)

A non-juried exhibition, the Artwalk is open to any artist wishing to enter, and has minimal restrictions on the type of art displayed (one of the most important being all art is in keeping with the Shire’s maturity rating). All of this means that it offers one of the richest mixes of SL art displayed within a single location in Second Life, with 2D art is displayed along the hedgerows of the Shire’s pathways and tree platforms overhead and 3D art among the community’s parks.

Each year attracts over a hundred SL artist – and this year is not exception. The depth and range of art on display is guaranteed to keep visitors exploring the paths and walks around the through the hedgerows –  and if walking proves a little much, there are always the caterpillar rides to ease the load on the feet.

Raglan Shire Artwalk: John B (John Bleriot)

Also, teleport boards are provided to help people find their way around the exhibition spaces, while balloons which offer rides around the region and through the art displays. However, given this is an opportunity to visit and appreciate Raglan Shire, I do recommend exercising your pedal extremities and doing at least some of your exploration on foot – just keep in mind people do have their homes in the regions as well.

Given the number of artists involved, there isn’t a published list of participants, but anyone interested in the world of SL art is bound to recognise some of the names of the artists here. I personally couldn’t help but notice CybeleMoon’s (Hana Hoobinoo’s) hauntingly beautiful art along, John B’s (John Bleroit’s) marvellous macro photography, Bear Silvershade’s marvellous black and white photography and Relenne’s (Rey Vlodovic’s) nautical-themed photo-paintings.

Raglan Shire Artwalk: Bear Silvershade

This is also my second year of exhibiting at Raglan Shire, and my thanks go to the organisers of the Artwalk and the folk of the Shire community to be a part of this event.

With five weeks to enjoy the Artwalk, there’s no need to try to cram everything into a single visit, so why not plan to pay Raglan Shire a number of visits over the coming weeks and take the time to enjoy the art rather than risk being overwhelmed with the sheer volume of images on display? It’s more than worth the time to do so.

Raglan Shaire Artwalk: Yours Truly

SLurl Details

Kultivate Sensuality Exhibition in Second Life

Kultivate Sensuality Exhibition: Reycharles Resident

Open from Friday, May 11th through until Sunday, May 13th, 2018 is the second annual Kultivate Sensuality Art Exhibition. As the name suggests, this is very much an exhibition of adult-themed art, so may not be everyone’s cup of tea.

Located on a sky platform, the exhibition presents the artists work in a series of individual gallery spaces set around an events square. Some of the artists have opted to simply display their art unfettered (so to speak, and pardon the pun); others have opted to dress their display spaces in keeping with the themes of the exhibition.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the female figure predominantly features in the art of display (there still seems to be something of s shying away from public exhibitions for full made nudity in the art world, even allowing for the Adult rating available in SL). There are exceptions to be found – but they are the minority here.  Many of the individual exhibits also seem entrenched in a familiar take on “sensuality”: full frontal nudity, sex, and SM / BDSM.

Kultivate Sensuality Exhibition

Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with this per se in an adult-themed art exhibition, and I’ve nothing against what is on display within this exhibition. However, sensuality is a broad canvas on which to paint, and opting from full frontal or direct nudity or “simple” themes such as BDSM at times  miss an opportunity to engage imaginations beyond just titillation.

Let’s face it, the most erotic and sensuous organ in the body is the mind: so it would perhaps be nice to see more artists recognise this, and play or toy with our imaginations rather than perhaps opting for the easier boobs’n’bums approach. Why not, for example, opt for the soft focus and the use of suggestion through setting, pose, lighting, etc.? Give the eye and the mind enough to get the imagination to take notice, and then let it weave what it wishes into the image.

Which shouldn’t be taken as a complaint against seeing this exhibition. As noted above, it’s a personal – and subjective – point-of-view, although I hope it may challenge some artists to consider the subject more broadly next time around 🙂 .

Kultivate Sensuality Exhibition: Ashlee Acacia Gracemount (chey5620)

The exhibition will be marked by a number of supporting events across the weekend (all times SLT):

Friday, May 11, 2018

  • 08:00: Hot Kiss Hunt, Sensuality Raffle and How Sensual are You? Photo challenge all open.
  • 16:00 – 17:00: As Bare As You Dare event with live performer Jaq Luik

Saturday, May 12, 2018

  • 13:00 – 14:00 Naughty Trivia & Angels N Demons Party.

Sunday, May 13, 2018

  • 12:00 noon – 14:00 Sensuality Whips & Chains Masked Ball.
  • 20:00 – Exhibition, Sensuality Raffle, How Sensual Are You Photo Challenge & Hot Kiss Hunt End.

SLurl Details