The Artists’ at Campbell Coast in Second Life

Artists’ Village, Campbell Coast

The Artists’ Village at Campbell Coast, created by BJoyful and Doc Rast (rasterscan) and curated by Owl Dragonash, opened A Street Fair, an extensive ensemble exhibition of 2D and 3D art on Tuesday, September 22nd.

A Scottish themed Mainland residential setting that’s open to the public, Campbell Coast offers access to both Linden roads and protected land and to sailable water, with the Artists’ village occupying one corner overlooking the coastal waters. The exhibition features a mix of residential artists and guest artists, with art displays both within the town houses of the village, along the cobbled streets and on the outdoor walls of some of the the buildings.

Artists’ Village, Campbell Coast: Etamae

Participating artists within the studio spaces comprise:  Dhyezl, Moondance, Reycharles, Gidgy Adagio, Whimsical Aristocrat, Michiel Bechir, Owl Dragonash, John and Tempest Huntsman, Suzen Juel, Dimi Ludwig, Jed Luckless, Lexus Melodie, Inara Pey, Larree Quixote, GoSpeed Rasere and Skip Staheli.

Further special exhibits are presented by Etamae, Jaz, Shakti Adored, Thomaz Blackbur, Lena Kiopak, Radagast Malaprop, and Ciottolna Xue.

Artists’ Village, Campbell Coast: Skip Staheli

As might be expected from this list, the art on display is wide-ranging and covers both 2D and 3D art, the former primarily focused on landscapes and avatar studies – although Jed luckless presents a rather unique display of posters from his past exhibitions and those from Phish Bowl events, , whilst GoSpeed offers links to her novels. Ciottolna Xue’s sculptures, meanwhile bring additional life to the local streets, together with some by Reycharles as they sit outside his studio.

Given the sheer volume of art on offer, trying to define all of it would lead to a TL;DR piece – suffice it to say that what is presented is engaging and well worth the visit. And given the sheer volume of art, for those looking for something new for their SL home, as well as those who appreciate art, will find this a worthwhile destination.

Artists’ Village, Campbell Coast: Yours Truly

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Looker and Sophie at Basilique in Second Life

Basilique: Sophie Marie Sinclair (Perpetua1010)

Recently opened at Niccoli Sweetwater’s Basilique region is a joint exhibition of art organised by the Focus team, and featuring the work of Looker Lumet and Sophie Marie Sinclair (Perpetua1010), both of whom are artists new to my eyes. This is something of a “split level” exhibition of work,  the core being located at Basilique’s skyborne exhibition and event space, Palazzo di Basilique, with some of Looker’s work also appearing at the ground level Galleria rotunda.

Located on the Lago di Garda terrace at the rear of Palazzo di Basilique, Sophie Marie Sinclair presents Yellow Expressions, a portfolio of her physical world art with – as might be expected from the title – something of a yellow theme running through them.

Basilique: Sophie Marie Sinclair (Perpetua1010)

Sophie’s background is perhaps as fascinating as her art. A graduate of the Academy of fine Arts Vienna, she is also by turn also a cartoonist, having had a a particular focus on political satire, an author and a ghost writer for certain well-known comedians. As a painter, she is an experimentalist in terms of materials she uses, but has a leaning towards plaster, glue, terracotta, stones, bones, ash, charcoal, and the use of natural pigments.

Sophie describes her artistic focus as being on the nude body and also abstract art, and the former is certainly demonstrated in Yellow Expressions, which features 10 studies of the male and female form, most of which appear to be pen or charcoal drawing finished in a water or ink wash to provide the natural yellow tone within them, with one piece (Mind N) offering the suggestion of a more oil-like and textured / layered finish that also involves richer hues.

All ten pieces are superbly rendered, their finish highly suggestive of being produced on porous plaster rather than canvas, something that gives them a highly tactile sense, whilst their neo-classical styling presents them as pieces that would fit any home environment admirably.

Basilique: Looker Lumet

Straddling the upper terrace at the front of Palazzo di Basilique and the ground-level Galleria rotunda, Looker Lumet offers a selection of his Second Life landscape photography (although he also produces avatar studies and portraits as well), with 12 pieces on the terrace, eight of which are also offered within the Galleria. I’m not entirely sure of the reason for this, although I assume it is to allow visitors to Basilique itself to view an art display without them necessarily being aware of the exhibitions up at Palazzo di Basilique.

Either way, Looker’s landscape work is rich in atmosphere, with the pieces offered in this selection perhaps leaning more towards darker tones and hues, some of which are fitting, given the theme (such as with The Graveyard in the Forest), whilst with others it offers a genuine and fitting depth of broodiness that emphasises Nature’s changing moods or the overall tone of the piece in question (see Abandoned and Seasight).

Which is not to say this is a “heavy” exhibition in terms of colour and tone: there are several brighter pieces that stand as memories of happy times on the beach or the splendour of a day’s sailing, all of which stands as an engaging exhibition.

Basilique: Looker Lumet

I gather both Sophie’s and looker’s work will remain at Basilique through until mid-October.

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Basilique is rated Adult

All4Art at IMAGO Land in Second Life

All4Art, IMAGO Land, September 2020: Mareea Farrasco

Recently renewed and reformed, the All4Art Project, managed by Carelyna Resident, opened its latest ensemble exhibition at IMAGO Land, on September 17th, 2020. It features the work of Sandi Benelli, Leonorah Beverly, Carey Chenault, Carisa Franizzi, Rose Hanry, Black Rose and Carelyna, together with Mareea Farrasco, who is also providing the setting for the exhibition on her IMAGO Land.

Described as being attached Mareea’s IMAGO Galleries, IMAGO Land is described as “an open area for visitors who love to explore or simply relax and for landscape photographers. Conceived as small islands, the different spots have different destinations: a park, a fishers village, a vacation resort, a beach, a country home with its yard, a bar and a dance floor, etc. As such, the location is perfect for the art on display, given the emphasis throughout on natural and natural – particularly coastal – settings.

All4Art Project, IMAGO Land, September 2020: Carey Chenault

The landing point for the exhibition sits within what might be called the social / events area of this half-region design, located on one of the larger islands in the the group that includes the dance floor and an old barn converted into a simple bar area. From here, three wooden board walks offer a choice of routes around the rest of the setting – which you take is entirely up to you, as the art is spread out around the various islands awaiting discovery as one explores.

Most of the artists participating in the exhibition are well known in these pages, and seeing them all together offers a delightfully complementary and also contrasting selection of images. Each artist has provided 5 images for the exhibition with some presenting their work on both sides of each canvas, simply because the layout of the island means their work can be seen / approached from either side.

All4Art Project, September 2020: Carisa Franizzi

With the exception of Black Rose, who provides a set of stunning original paintings, all of the images presented have been captured in Second Life. With a similar exception of Carisa Franizzi, who offers five black and white images that can quite capture the eye, all are presented in colour, from the soft tones of images post-processed to give a watercolour look and feel, to the vibrant hues and tones of Autumn and and bright hues of summer cast through an oil painting like finish.

Together, all of the images presented through this exhibition help remind us that beyond the walls of self-isolation and the constraints of social distancing and limited travel opportunities, there is still a rich and vibrant world around us. A world, one might be tempted to say, that is doing rather well because of our enforced absence – but will nevertheless be waiting to greet our return when times are such that we can once again roam freely and appreciate all of nature’s delights.  Further, many of the places presented in these images remind us, however subliminally, that humans and nature can get along side-by-side.

All4Art Project: September 2020: Black Rose

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The art of Hermes Kondor in Second Life

Hermes Kondor: Reflections

In July I wrote about an exhibition of physical world photographs by Hermes Kondor, available at his own Kondor Photo Gallery (see: The beauty of steam machines in Second Life). However, that gallery is only a part of a complex that Hermes has put together, so I decided to hop back for a further look. The complex comprises several individual areas linked by a teleport disc system. These facilities comprise: a boulevard of rental studios for artists, an attractively Deco night club, and three galleries – including the photo gallery noted above – and a studio/gallery used to display Hermes’ SL avatar studies.

Hermes’ primary gallery is the Kondor Art Centre, which at the time of my visit was home to an exhibition entitled Reflections.

I invite you to join on a journey deep inside a magical lake, where we will find strange and beautiful creatures, lightbeings and gates to an alternative reality, deep inside a garden of fantasy and wonder.

– Hermes Kondor, describing his exhibit Reflections

Hermes Kondor: Reflections

This is a collection of 24 digital images that are truly remarkable in their content and depth. At their heart, each image features a mix of light, water (that of the magical lake) and and the reflections of the exhibit’s title. The majority of the pictures feature macro views of plant elements presented in such a way as to suggest they indeed from some alien – as in unknown – environment; alien, and yet somehow familiar.

Beautifully composited and and framed, these are images that are entirely captivating in their use of colour and light to create a rich sensation of living creatures of the imagination.

Hermes Kondor: Flowers

Plants and macro photography are also the subject of the images displayed within the Kondor Art Garden. Here, sixteen close-up images of garden flowers, each again perfectly framed through the aforementioned macro lens, again offering a considered balance of light and depth of field that makes for another quite entrancing collection of photographs, each one deeply attractive.

For those who enjoy images produced in Second Life can visit the Kondor Photo Studio. This is both a gallery and a studio, presenting a series of avatar studio by Hermes. Those interested in engaging him for a photo session should contact Hermes directly.

Hermes Kondor: Flowers

As noted above, I first came across Hermes work in his exhibition of photographs taken at the Electricity Museum, Lisbon, Portugal. I was immediately taken by those images, which can still be enjoyed at the Kondor Photo Gallery,  and admit to be utterly taken by her work in touring the rest of the gallery facilities he operates.

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Waka is rated Moderate

Announcing the Second Life Endowment for the Arts

via Linden Lab

In August 2019, and after an eight-year run (it’s first public exhibitions coming in 2011 after initially being announced in late 2010), the Linden Endowment for the Arts (LEA) closed, the organising committee having decided to step away from managing it (see: Linden Endowment for the Arts to officially close, LEA: more on the closure, and a move to save it and Linden Endowment for the Arts: update).

Following the announcement, there were numerous discussions on how the work of the LEA might be continued. In particular, artists Tansee Resident and Riannah Avora launched an in-world group specifically with the aim of gathering ideas and viewpoints on how the work of the LEA – and Linden Lab’s involvement in the body – might be continued.

At the time, a lot of discussions were held and a considerable number of ideas put forward (I was happy to play a small background role in advising both Tansee and Riannah in a number of areas, including potential discussions with Linden Lab). Ultimately, both went on to found groups operating on similar principals to LEA, with Tansee co-founding the Hannigton Endowment for the Arts (HEA) along with Hannington Xeltentat, and Riannah co-founding United Artists of SL.

However, the idea of a Lab-supported facility to help promote arts in Second Life never entirely went away, and Tansee continued to pursue ideas, refining a proposal originally created from the ideas gathered after the LEA had closed down. Then, in June 2020, a conversation with Lab CEO Ebbe Altberg at the SL17B event opened a door of opportunity. This in turn lead to a series of meetings with senior staff at the Lab, including Patch Linden, Vice President of Product Operations, and Brett Linden, the Lab’s senior Marketing Manager. After several such meetings, which included reviews of, and updates to, the proposal, Linden Lab indicated a willingness to support a new body similar to that of the LEA, but operating on a more modest and flexible footing.

Announced today, and starting an January 2021, the Second Life Endowment for the Arts (SLEA) will operate across seven regions supplied by Linden Lab, and managed by Tansee and Hannington supported by a Board of Advisers (the full list of whom is yet to be announced), and a team of volunteers to help in the day-to-day operations, once the new regions are open.

The seven SLEA regions

The seven regions, which are currently being set-up, will comprise the following:

  • A  central hub (SLEA7). This will likely include:
    • A landing point.
    • Facilities for SLEA coordinators, advisers and volunteers.
    • An education centre.
    • A events centre to support arts activities and events across Second Life.
    • A teleport hub serving the SLEA grant regions and information on the artists currently exhibiting.
    • The SLEA Theatre for mounting art-related and special events.
    • An art Challenge corner.
  • Four Full regions (SLEA1-3 and SLEA6) for region-wide art installations ranging from 1 to 6 months duration.
  • A single region (SLEA4) providing four quarter-region installation spaces.
  • A sandbox region. This will include an artist hangout and club for events and parties along with a new underwater building area.
The planned SLEA 7 hub region

As  noted above, SLEA will formally début in January 2021. Between now and then, the plan is to release information over a period of time, starting in October. These activities will include:

  • Providing information on:
    • How those interested to volunteer to help run SLEA, and on specific volunteer roles that are available.
    • How artists will be able to apply for grants, and requirements / guidelines for exhibiting through SLEA.
  • Updates on region design status.
  • Detailed information on the SLEA website, social media channels, etc.
  • The opening of the first round of applications for artists.

The reason for not having the website / social media presence in place alongside of this announcement was explained by SLEA co-ordinator Tansee Resident as follows:

We intentionally do not have a Website or a FB page or any of the essential networking tools. The reason for this is we truly want to include the artists in building this community from the ground up. In order to build a solid foundation it is imperative that we establish a Volunteer base and find people who are willing to share their area of expertise.

Tansee Resident, SLEA Co-ordinator

Proposed time line for SLEA development

So, in the interim period, those interested in SLEA as artists and / or as potential volunteers are asked to join the SLEA in-world group, which will be the primary channel of communications for the next few weeks. Also, to help promote SLEA, there will be a special Designing Worlds show featuring Brett and Patch Linden, together with Tansee and Hannington, which will be show at 14:00 SLT on Monday, September 14th via the Designing Worlds website and channels.

You can also read the official SLEA announcement from the Lab.

I’ll also continue to provide updates through these pages.

The landscapes of Second Life

L’autre Oeil: Anouk LeFarve

Now open at L’autre Oeil (“The Other Eye) Gallery, owned and curated by Blaize Nightfire, is the gallery’s September 2020 exhibition entitled Landscapes. This is an ensemble exhibition featuring the work of Sandi Benelli, Charly Keating, Anouk Lefavre, Michael Lysios, Loegan Magic and Charlie Namiboo, who between them are some of Second life’s foremost landscape photographers / artists.

The gallery opened in June 2020, and was founded with a specific focus of promoting the work of artists to others in the Second Life arts community – although that doesn’t prevent admirers of the arts from visiting and appreciating the art on offer.

L’autre Oeil is a gallery for artists who love other artists. To be seen with the other eye, observers who appreciate a different perspective on the world around us.

– Blaize Nightfire, describing L’autre Oeil’s mission

 

For this exhibition –  my first visit to the gallery (and certainly not my last) – each artist is displaying three pieces of their work, some of which might easily be seen as story-telling triptych of images. Take Charlie Namiboo’s set, for example, the two outer images of plainslands neatly framing the black and white images of a river in what might be a tale of three parts, the two colour images supporting the centre image.

L’autre Oeil: Charlie Namiboo

Although the title of the exhibition is Landscapes, some of the artists have cast their net a little wider. Loegan Magic, for example, offers a richly evocative rooftop scene that is exquisitely composed, predominantly in black a white, but with a wall painting of John Lennon offered in colour, staring from the the lower part of the image in a haunting capture that carries echoes of Imagine in  Lennon’s eyes, and also a hint of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s Dr. T.J Ekleburg from the Great Gatsby. Similarly, Michael Lysios presents an oriental street scene, whilst Sandi Beneli uses SL landscapes and coastal scenes as a means to frame broader narratives on life and living – from flying a kite to the promise of a car trip. All of these images present additional depth to what is a captivating exhibition.

L’autre Oeil: Blaize Nightfire

Tucked away in the exhibition are three images by Blaize himself, who demonstrates he is no slouch with the camera, offering three images of his own that are as evocative as any of the others in these exhibition.

An attractive ensemble exhibition, well worth dropping by to see.

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