Fracture Facture in Second Life

Club LA and Gallery: Joss Floss

Now open on the mezzanine level of Club LA and Gallery, curated by Fuyuko ‘冬子’ Amano (Wintergeist), is an intriguing exhibition by Joss Floss.

Fracture Facture (or possibly just Fracture) is an unusual curio of a piece that defies attempts to quantify it – which I tend to think is intentional. It is also very cleverly presented, mixing 2D and 3D elements that I suspect in places are both slightly tongue-in-cheek whilst simultaneously intended to challenge perceptions.

Club LA and Gallery: Joss Floss

What amounts to eight individual pieces are arranged around the walls and on the floor, each presenting a very specific vignette, starting with (in terms of being nearest to the stairs up to the level), the titular piece Fracture. No liner notes are provided to the exhibition or to the individual pieces, so interpretation is purely in the eyes of the beholder.

For my part (and given the way my mind works), I felt several of the pieces perhaps carry a subtext on the subject of identity, which rage from how we perceive our worth in life, to the manner in which some may objectify others, unable to see them as individuals, through to a need to reinforce ego, with (perhaps) a metaphor for our lives always in a state of flux (or perhaps “repair”). Another of the pieces struck me (whether intentional or not) as gently mocking the more highbrow approach to art, as it put me in mind of the over-inflated view taken of a certain English artist’s “autobiographical” work. However, I do emphasise that there is absolutely no objective reason why this should be so, in terms of the piece by Joss.

Club LA and Gallery: Joss Floss

But this is the real charm of the items in little exhibition. Like the artist, they defy being put in a box, but instead ask to each be seen and judged on the basis of how it presents itself to us, without a broader constraint of exhibition theme, or stated ideal on the artist’s part.

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Windlight Gallery re-opening exhibition in Second Life

Windlight Gallery: anyia and Maaddi Benazzi

Kultivate magazine and the Windlight Art Gallery are celebrating the re-opening of the latter – now housed in a new gallery building – with their first art exhibition for 2019.

Officially opened on Sunday, January 6th, 2019 at 13:00 SLT (a time I was unfortunately unable to make in-world, despite being one of the artists – my apologies to all), the exhibition features work by 18 artists: Camellia (captainofmysoul), Marcel Mosswood, Maaddi Benazzi (maaddi), Caly (CalystiaMoonshadow), Dream Kolda (DreamMakerXDreamBreaker), Kayly Iali, artandsoul Constantine, Cybelle Moon (Hana Hoobinoo), anyia, Jamee Sandalwood Hiess (Jamee Sandalwood), Tequila Mockingbird (Tequila Krovac), Pieni, Kody Meyers (KodyMeyers), Fuyuko ‘冬子’ Amano (Wintergeist), John Brianna (johannes1977), Karma Daxeline (Karma Weymann), Seraphim Placebo and, as noted, yours truly.

Windlight Gallery: Jamee Sandalwood Hiess and Cybele Moon

Such a gathering brings together a rich mix of art and images, encompassing both the physical and the virtual. John Brianna, Kayly Iali, Marcel Mosswood and Pieni, for example, offer a mix of their own paintings and drawings, Cybele Moon presents more of her captivating fantasy images, and artandsoul Constantine offers a selection of physical world photographs.

As might be expected, the SL images largely split themselves between avatar studies and landscapes, although Kody Meyers present some quite stunning interpretations of Mistero Kifeng’s sculptures. I also have to admit to being drawn to both the marvellous monochrome winter images by Jamee Sandalwood Hiess and aniya’s self-portraits.

Windlight Gallery: Kody Meyers, Fuyuko ‘冬子’ Amano and your’s truly

The new Windlight gallery building is a design from the Fanatik range and which is popular among gallery owners. It offers plenty of space, with high ceilings and good lighting, while an upper level offers additional display space, its mezzanine design avoiding any feeling that the space is crowded.

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Black and White at the Lyric Art Gallery in Second Life

Lyric Art Gallery – Black and White: Ebcy Clift (l) and Boone Blanco

Opening on Saturday, January 5th, 2019 at the Lyric Art Gallery is Visual Feast: Black and White, an exhibition featuring over 30 artists (and for which I’m kicking myself, as I was invited to participate… and then forgot!). Each of those artists participating was asked to submit and image on the theme of winter landscapes, although some of the art displayed takes a slightly different turn on presentation, with several pieces, while monochrome, focused on avatars.

Exhibitions like this are often an interesting way of getting to see work by artists / photographers with whom you might not be familiar or otherwise get to see – or to re-acquaint oneself with the work of artists not seen in a while. Such is the case for myself, in coming across First Touch by  Leonorah Beverly, and artist whose work I only recently encountered for the first time, instantly finding her landscape work instantly captivating. With First Touch, whilst not a landscape, demonstrates her skill in presenting an evocative story within an image.

Lyric Art Gallery: Emma D’Souza (l); Beccha (c) and Leonorah Beverly

Within those pictures that keep more-or-less to the theme of winter landscapes, these is a fascinating mix; from “straight-forward” pieces with fields of snow or trains chugging between snow banks, or houses sheltering under thick blankets of snow, through to more subtle views of winter: snowflakes drifting through an open window (Black and White by Beccha); or wonderfully atmospheric, with a bridge caught under a sullen sky; the clouds portents of cold weather (Bridge Over Troubled Water by Mishe Mactavish).

The avatar studies are equally  broad ranging, with several encompassing the winter theme as the setting, others focused purely on the avatar(s) imaged. While it is not surprising avatars get to feature in some of the images – we can be much a part of a winter setting as fir trees, snowmen and frozen ponds -, I admit to being surprised at the number of images that more-or-less eschew the winter theme (or present it only minimally) in favour of presenting a portrait, either completely or to a greater degree. Which is not to say any of them are any the less captivating – I found Pure by Andre Mascot (Snouman) particularly striking, for example.

Lyric Art Gallery: Gwen Enchanted (L); Gustaf (pv544); Fenn MacMoragh (r)

All told a very eclectic, engaging exhibition that offer more of a mix than might be expected from the invitation / greeter description. For those able to attend, the official opening will take place at 11:00 SLT, on Saturday, January 5th, 2019, with music by DJ Fae.

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ViktorSavior at Lin C in Second Life

Lin C Art Gallery: Viktor Savior

Now open at the Lin C Art Gallery, curated by Lin Carlucci, is an exhibition by ViktorSavior, presenting a three-part mix of his art, and which makes for an interesting visit.

On the ground floor, and directly inside the main doors, Viktor offers 21 of his physical world paintings of the natural world. I’m not sure of the medium used, although they appear to perhaps be watercolours, they offer wide open views of land, sea and the night sky, with a particular emphasis on mountains, and with a lean towards the use of blue.

Each of the paintings might have been inspired by a physical world location, either personally seen or viewed through image or photograph, or which might be entirely drawn from the imagination. Which they are hardly matters, as each piece has its own story to tell. Expressive of a love of the night, the dawn, mountains (something to which I can very much relate, as I have a love of mountains myself and they are one of the few things I can actually draw in a meaningful way!), and nature as a whole.

Lin C Art Gallery: Viktor Savior

These are paintings that, if you give them a chance, will   draw you into them, placing you on a windswept coast where the wind and unseen rocks pull the sea into rearing, frothing beasts; where a river winding down through woodland draws you to wonder what lies beyond the mountains from which it has come, or where the night sky beckons from the mountain tops, or the Sun warms a winter’s blanket, and clouds tower into the sky in reflection of the majesty of the mountains below.

Also on the ground floor of the gallery is a series of 18 avatar portraits offered in monochrome and apparently drawn by hand, rather than rendered from photographs. All but four are of female avatars, and all beautifully and simply capture their subjects in a manner not far short of perfect. There is a level of life and emotion within each study that offers a glimpse of possible thoughts and feelings behind the eyes. In a word, they are vibrant in a way perhaps more normally seen in colour images.

Lin C Art Gallery: Viktor Savior

This vibrancy continues on the gallery’s mezzanine level, where a further 18 monochrome images are presented, these all full-body images of the male body in motion, most likely dancing at the time the image from which the drawing originated was captured. There is a wonderful sense of dynamic fluidity in each, a grace that speaks of human, not avatar, movement and actions.

The three aspects of this exhibition offer a mix that is rich in its diversity, giving insight into Viktor’s art as eloquent as any biography. There is much to be admired throughout the exhibition, and the paintings are all available for sale. However, were I to be asked, I would have to admit I found myself particularly drawn to the portrait studies, as I found them to be marvellously alive.

Lin C Art Gallery: Viktor Savior

The exhibition will remain open through until the start of February 2019.

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Among Angels in Second Life

Among Angels

Bedrich Panacek-Guisse (Bedrich Panacek), co-owner of Ville de Coeur, invited me to visit a new art exhibition in the catacombs beneath the Citadel Gardens.

Among Angels is a story in art presented by JannaWhiskers. It depicts a conversation between a small girl and her mother on the subject of Angels. Images are presented in order, each with an accompanying text element relating the unfolding story. As such, it’s important to follow the directions through the catacombs from the entrance – although this is not hard.

Among Angels

Janna was offered the opportunity to hold the exhibition after winning the Ville de Coeur Autumn Photo Competition. She presents some 30 images, not all of which have an associated text element, but they are all presented in a golden finish that can make details a little hard to discern at times, but which also brings a heavenly, other-worldly look to each, and is perfectly reflective of how we often imagine angels as being creatures of light.

The dialogue is presented in two colours: yellow (or gold, if you prefer), for the young girl, and red for her mother. Their words are woven into a mother / daughter discussion that might be seen as typical of many in the way it reflects the bond of love between the two, but which also reveals more. The child’s perception is clear and through her questions, she not only touches upon, but gently reveals, her mother’s own beliefs and  – faith?

Among Angels

As such, this is an evocative exhibition, one that is ideally suitable to the way it is presented through the halls of the catacombs, the route bringing to life the walk taken by mother and daughter as they talk. A walk given added depth through the inclusion of figurines by Silas Merlin, that offer a further sense of presence and company – or childhood – through the exhibition.

Places to sit are also offered through the halls, allowing visitors time to contemplate the art and appreciate the nuances of the story and the parental / child relationship. In addition, Janna offers a series of wire-frame gift boxes, each of which will present a gift when touched.

A touching exhibition, I couldn’t help but hear Robbie Williams’ Angels, some the lyrics seemed to aptly fit the theme of the exhibition.

And through it all she offers me protection
A lot of love and affection
Whether I’m right or wrong
And down the waterfall
Wherever it may take me
I know that life won’t break me
When I come to call, she won’t forsake me
I’m loving angels instead.

Among Angels

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Art Neveux in Second Life

DiXmiX Gallery: Art Neveux

Open until the end of January 2019 at The Womb, the basement gallery space at DiXmiX Gallery, is Art Neveux, by Nevereux, and which I assume is a little play on her name and the term art nouveau.

A selection of constructs that offer 3D works designed to appear almost two-dimensional, this a somewhat difficult selection of art to quantify, being very subjective in nature – as Nevereux herself notes:

Design is fine. History is mine. An argument for art. Prim-cakes and some technology. Around the corner there is some extreme context. Others, so deliberately meaningless. If you want, it’s slathering jam on a toast. Sticking just for fun. And may whatever holds you up stay forever beneath you.  

DiXmiX Gallery: Art Neveux

These are all pieces that are decidedly geometric in nature, presented in black and white, with red at times putting in an appearance. The net result is a series of stark – in the sense of their boldness – pieces that nevertheless have within them a sense of balance. Whilst art nouveau may well be suggested by the exhibition title, I’d perhaps lean towards its presence in the works here being only in a very modern interpretation; I tended to look on many of the pieces as being more abstract in nature, with some also carrying art deco motifs.

What I did find particularly interesting is the manner in which much of the art has been constructed. Rather than being completely original, most of the individual pieces are in fact constructs put together using building components by the likes of VetronUK, Chaser Haks and Isabelle Stoop. There is nothing wrong with art being created in this way, it happens all the time in the physical world; however, seeing the manner in which building components have been used within these pieces did have me recalling a discussion around an installation by another artist (and in another place) from earlier in the year.

DiXmiX Gallery: Art Neveux

Within that other installation, use was made of a series of mesh items readily available via the SL Marketplace, with little or no change made to them beyond outside of some retexturing. This led to a question being raised on whether the inclusion of such elements constituted “fair use”, and whether they justified the installation as a work of art; the argument being that their use hadn’t been sufficiently “transformative” to warrant either. It was not a view to which I could agree; I felt the inclusion of such elements was both fair and transformative, simply because they were integral to one’s response to, and interpretation of, the installation as a whole.

Such is the case here. Yes, many of the components used are “off the shelf” mesh shapes and forms designed to assist builders. However, the manner in which they have been brought together within individual pieces is transformative, both in terms of their individual use and in our interpretation of each complete piece.

DiXmiX Gallery: Art Neveux

There is also, in keeping with Nevereux’s own words, a sense of playfulness and illusion about some of the pieces offered (such as Palm Leaf, Belong, Warrior and Perspective, each of which should be cammed over carefully). These perhaps stand in reflection of the artist’s own nature – or perhaps a reminder that perhaps we shouldn’t look to deeply into individual pieces in order to discern “meaning”.

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