Pumpkins: Digital Magic in Second Life

Beckridge Gallery – Pumpkins: Digital Magic

Diamond Marchant recently extended an invitation for me to drop into the latest exhibition at her Beckridge Gallery in Bellisseria to see a fun little exhibition of 3D creations that are a common element for the “Halloween season”: pumpkins and pumpkin lanterns.

Digital Magic is described by Diamond thus:

Fall brings pumpkins. In Second Life that means an endless variety of shapes, sizes, colours, embellishments, and carvings. Some are comforting, some horrifying… yet all are a product of digital magic. The exhibit includes the works of 37 pumpkin creators spanning the last 10 years. … Creators include 22769 Anachron, Andika, Apple Fall, ARIA, Ariskea, AVEC TOI, Candle and Cauldron, CELESTE, Cubura, Dark Secrets, Di’Cor, Dreamscapes Decor, DUST, Dysfunctionality , Fancy Decor, Finishing Touches, GOOSE, JIAN, Kres, LaFrayeur, Lilith’s Den, MudHoney, Organica, Ramen, random.Matter, Sass, Sau, Sepph, Soy, tarte, The Green Door, The Owl, Trompe Loeil, Vespertine, What Next, and Your Dreams.
Beckridge Gallery – Pumpkins: Digital Magic

The result is a house filled with pumpkins large and small, most carved for the season, some painted, some looking more like they may have been imbibing a tipple or two rather than being frightening, and one or two looking like they’ve been inspired by a Tim Burton movie. All are, however, quite endearing to see, and the house has been suitably decorated for the exhibition; such is the detail found within all of them, it is easy to see why this can be classified as an exhibition of 3D art.

While primarily aimed at Halloween, Digital Magic will remain open through until the end of November, potentially reflecting the popularity of pumpkins  – albeit pumpkins that have been more happily decorated or have been used to create a certain pie :).

When visiting, you should set your viewer to midnight to enjoy Digital Magic under the intended lighting (the environment hasn’t been set within the parcel). Otherwise – enjoy!

Beckridge Gallery – Pumpkins: Digital Magic

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Diamond’s views of the Moles and Lindens in Second Life

Beckridge Gallery – Diamond Marchant: Work Look

Second Life’s 18th anniversary is, at the time of writing, almost over. The celebrations have come to an end and the regions themselves will be closing to public access on July 6th, 2021.

I mention this because the SL18B regions are part of the broad-ranging work that comes under the remit of the Linden Department of Public Works (LDPW), and the contractors – the Moles – who are employed by the Lab through it.

As well as the SLB regions (this year put together with the assistance of residents like Walton F. Wainwright (Faust Steamer)), the Moles are also responsible for – as we all doubtless know – the likes of the Mainland infrastructure, Bellissera, the Linden Portal Park and associated experiences / games, and more. All of this is in part celebrated with the annual Meet the Moles session at each year’s SLB celebrations, when we get the opportunity to see many of the Moles all gathered together as the answer questions and talk about their work.

Beckridge Gallery – Diamond Marchant: Work Look

However, for her summer exhibition at her Beckridge Gallery in Bellisseria,  Diamond Marchant presents another opportunity for us to see the Moles. Work Look, her new exhibition, presents a series of portraits of many of the Moles (and some of the Lindens) as they go about their work in-world preparing the SL18B regions for the 2021 celebrations.

Mounted on the walls of the gallery and the attached greenhouse are around 27 portraits of the Moles (Dion gets to appear twice, to make the total number of images 28), together with portraits of Grumpity, Strawberry, Brett and Patch Linden with a surprise appearance by Philip Linden, who looks to have dropped in on the celebrations as well.

Beckridge Gallery – Diamond Marchant: Work Look

So, if you fancy taking another look at the Moles and celebrating / recalling SL18B, the Beckridge Gallery might be the place to visit!

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A boutique gallery visit in Bellisseria

Beckridge Gallery: Yellowstone Boardwalk

The Linden Homes at Bellisseria can be used for many things besides a house; so long as commercial activities don’t take place within one, people are limited only by their imaginations. So it is that friendly cafés, information centres, hang-outs, group centres and more have sprung up across the content – as have a number of boutique art galleries. I’ve had occasion to visit a couple of the latter in 2019, and the opening of two new exhibitions in April gave me cause to hop back once more.

Like myself, Diamond Marchant has an interest in space flight and astronomy, a fact that first drew me to her Beckridge Gallery in July 2019, when she was presenting an exhibition celebrating the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11’s landing on the Moon (see: Celebrating Apollo 11 in Second Life and Sansar). For April 2020, Diamond presents Yellowstone Boardwalk, an exhibition of her own photographs taken in Yellowstone National Park over a 10-day period in June, 2019.

Beckridge Gallery: Yellowstone Boardwalk

Yellowstone is famous for many things: being the first U.S. National Park (if not the first in the world), for its mountains and waterfalls, its geysers and hydrothermal system, and the incredible richness of its flora and fauna. As such, it is a place that allows people to create marvellous images of sweeping vistas, tumbling falls, rugged mountain ranges and towering peaks, and to film its fabulous array of wildlife.

Sitting atop a vast caldera some 72km by 45 km, sitting over a massive magma chamber thought to be 60 km by 29 km and up to 12 km in depth. This chamber powers much of the geologic activity within the park, and gives rise to a dynamic environment of heated pools, fumeroles and more, with paths through these living location by the use of board walks that both protect the landscape and the tourists visiting it.

It is from these board walks that Diamond has produced a series of images that convert the setting into wonderful fractal-like scenes that  show the hidden energies that lie below ground and seen only by the wisp-like venting of gas and steam. The make for a fascination portfolio of photographs, beautifully rounded-out by two of those sweeping vista style shots that capture the enormity of the park’s open skies.

Hoot Suite Gallery: Awesome Fallen

The Hoot Suite Gallery, curated by Owl Dragonash meanwhile, offers an exhibition of Second Life  art by Awesome Fallen.

Surrealistic is tone, rich in colour whether dark or light, Awesome’s work often has a dream-like feel to it, sometimes tinged with whimsy and at others by fantasy – but it is always carries a sense of depth and story. All of this is very much in evidence across the two floors of the Hoot Suite, the upper floor featuring a quartet of avatar studies that mix of fantasy and whimsy. The rooms on the lower floor can be found pieces that demonstrate the more surreal nature of Awesome’s work. Together, upper and lower floor offer a compact, engaging cross-section of her art.

Hoot Suite Gallery: Awesome Fallen

Yellowstone Boardwalk will, I believe, remain open through the spring of 2020; Awesome Fallen’s exhibition will remain open at the Hoot Suite Gallery through to May 11th, 2020.

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