Tag Archives: LEA Reviews

Art Is… Rhythm in Second Life

Art Is … Rhythm – Nessuno Myoo

Art is… Rhythm is a collaborative arts installation now open in Second Life. Led by Dunt Gant, it involves Daco Monday, Kicca Igaly, Nessuno Myoo and Paola Mills, with a concert series presented by Ahnue Heartlight.

“Rhythm is a progressive succession in the order of things,” Dunt says. “In this installation, rhythm works as a subtle link between poetry (Daco Monday), dance (Kicca Igaly), and music (Nessuno Myoo), as shown by the three artists as 3D constructions. Paola Mills presents her vision of these three art forms by completing the 3D installation with her 2D photographs. As for myself, I tried to accompany these works with my presentation: a large 3D charcoal drawing, white and black, light and shadows.”

At Is … Rhythm – Paola Mills

On arrival, visitors are asked to adjust their viewer settings as per a board on one wall of the arrival area. Note this has a slight error, referencing “basic shadows” rather than “basic shaders”. The 512m minimum draw distance also seems excessive, given the installation is enclosed; 260m-270m is really sufficient and less taxing on a system.

A teleport platform from the landing point carries people down into the installation proper, which I believe will also be the locations of the planned concerts. This is a space in which light and shadow accent monochrome walls and floors, the ivory teeth of a piano keyboard undulating around the walls. The space is actually split into two, the upper level largely covered by transparent prims, offering a view down to the lower, on which sit two of the artist’s pieces: Kicca’s Dance with Me and Nessuno’s Before the Silence. To one side of this level, poala’s photography floats as pages in a book of music, or is held aloft by the outlined figures of dancers.

Art Is… Rhythm – Kicca Igaly

Two ramps descend from the photo area to the lower floor (also reached via TP), where Daco Monday’s piece rises to pass through the transparent upper level. This level also houses an interactive ballet barre by Kicca. The concert season for the installation will launch on Sunday March 19th, celebrating Before the Silence with Ultraviolet Alter will performing live. Additional events will likely be posted on the installation’s web page.

“I always used memories from my RL life as a source of inspiration for my SL artwork. The collages I do, my travels, the sea, my pictures, my artistic preferences, etc,” Dunt says of the design for the space.

Art Is … Rhythm – Daco Monday

“For the sim rendering, I got inspired by my conté pencil and charcoal drawings on paper. A 2D in which lights and shadows are seeking the volume this medium do not have. I therefore used flat prims as brush strokes.  Shadows provide volume to the flat medium, allowing all my artwork to become 3D.”

I found Art Is… Rhythm is a curious installation. Artistically, there is n doubting the creativity and expression presented within it; but emotionally – for me at least, over two visits (and a brief stop-over at the opening) – it didn’t resonate. Perhaps this is because, as a space intended to support visual and aural art, seeing it sans any concert robbed it of its voice.  As the installation is open through until the end of June, I may well have to return for a third visit to find out.

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Whitechapel Victorian London in Second Life

Whitechapel Victorian London is the name of arts and performance environment created by the team at TerpsiCorp ARTWerks (See: TerpsiCorps ARTWerks: performance art in Second Life).

While not intended as a historical representation of London’s notorious Whitechapel district, the installation in part takes its lead from London’s East End. Three-quarters of the region is occupied by cobbled streets of close-packed houses and shops overshadowed by hulking warehouses. In contrast, the remaining quarter is given to more opens spaces, complete with a grand ballroom which has something of a faint echo of the old Royal London Hospital.

“We had our grand opening on March 4th,” TerpsiCorp’s Artistic Director, Cassie Parker (nanki Hendes) said, as Caitlyn and I explored the installation. “It’s all just beginning to evolve.” Over the coming four months that evolution will see the region used for a variety of activities and performances.

From the landing point, visitors can walk past the great ballroom along a wide, almost boulevard-like cobbled road, or wander through a park and over a bridge. Whichever route is taken will bring them to the streets of Whitechapel which – if I may make so bold – are best seen under twilight or night-time conditions, which enhances the atmosphere, bringing forth the street-hugging mist, the glow of the gas lamps and the inviting warmth of lit windows.

Behind many of these windows sit gallery spaces occupied by artists who have been extended an invitation to display at Whitechapel Victorian London. Some of the names might be known to lovers of art in SL, others perhaps not. All should be browsed for the rich variety of art they offer.

Nor are the shops the only galleries; the is an outdoor 3D art area and the brooding warehouses also provide space for artists. Simply haul back their heavy metal doors (if they are not already open), and step inside. Daylight can be the best for viewing the art, obviously, but several of the artists have made considered use of lighting effects, so experimenting with windlight in some of the gallery spaces is suggested.

Voice events are also represented through the Whitechapel Storytellers shop in the north-east corner of the region, which has an events calendar just outside. For other news on activities and events within the region, please refer to the TerpsiCorp ARTWerks LEA Facebook page.

Whitechapel Victorian London will remain open through until the end of June, 2017. Whether you are interested in art or exploring new environments in Second Life, I recommend a visit, and in keeping an eye on the Facebook page for news of events.

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The Architect’s Playground in Second Life

The Architect’s Playground is a full region installation by Methias Kira under the brand name of Abstract Soul. If you love colour, scripted effects and particles, it is liable to be an installation you’ll want to see.

Against the backdrop of a setting sun, visitors arrive on a platform 260 metres in the air. A golden figure pirouettes slowly. Everywhere are intricate traces of light brightening, fading, pulsing, from single strands to fields of spheres to delicate towers alive with a steady flow of light upwards, and great tubes which similarly ebb and flow with colour.

Within this kaleidoscope world, a paths of ever forming and fading golden ribbons beckons visitors outward from the  landing point to offer than a choice or routes upwards or downwards, their paths marked by clouds of colours spheres floating and pulsing serenely.

Whichever route you take will lead you past particles displays to platforms with more swirls and lines gently changing light. Some of these platforms feature more of the golden (and silver) figures (by Gwen Ferox and Nacht Fox) in various poses; others simply offer scintillating, almost hypnotic patterns.

Travel down low enough, and you may come to a platform where a white star pattern forms and fades, forms and fades; step into the centre and you’ll drop even lower, to islands of light formed from concentric circles sitting just above the water.  And even these are not the end of things: dive under water, and there is more to be found.

The Architect’s Playground, can be a little hard on the GPU the longer you spend within it (I’d recommend disabling shadows if you run with them on, to ease some of the load), but it is nevertheless an engaging visit, the intricate design having both an abstract and an organic feel to it. The installation will remain open until the end of June.

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The Gardens by the Bay in Second Life

Now open to visitors is the Gardens by the Bay, a full region installation by Maddy  (Nibby Riddler), who is perhaps best known for her Eclectica homestead region designs (which you can read about here and here). It is a stunning installation, rooted in the physical world, but with its own unique flavour, and I am not exaggerating in the slightest when I say it is a must see.

The inspiration for the design comes from Singapore’s Gardens by the Bay, a nature park spanning 101 hectares (250 acres) of reclaimed land in central Singapore. First announced in 2005, it is designed as Singapore’s permier outdoor recreation space, and a spearhead in the drive to transform the city-state  from a “Garden City” to a “City in a Garden”.

Working with far less than 250 acres, Maddy has beautifully captured the essence of the Gardens by the Bay, reproducing many of its iconic elements. Central to the design is the magnificent Supertree Grove. Vertical gardens in their own right, rising up to 50 metres (162 ft) into the air, these massive structures are home to enclaves of unique and exotic ferns, vines, orchids and bromeliaceae. They also perform a variety of functions to support the gardens around them. Just as an elevated walkway connects them in the physical world, so to does a similar walkway loop Maddy’s Supertrees, allowing visitors to gain a panoramic view of the gardens below.

Linked by a series of paths, the ground level gardens bring together elements found across all three of the major areas of the original, encapsulating so much of beauty, fauna and architecture without the region every feeling overcrowded, A note card is provided at the landing point to help visitors navigate around, and I thoroughly recommend taking it and reading it before starting any exploration.

Another aspect of the original offered to visitors is a representation of one of the massive greenhouses, home to a rich and colourful spread of flora. The famous Audemars Piguet Floral Clock, unveiled on the occasion of the 50th Anniversary of Singapore independence in 2015, is also represented, as are the giant silvery ants which younger visitors to Singapore’s gardens find so irresistible – and so much more.

With places to sit and admire, opportunities to dance and capturing the essence of all three major areas of the original, Maddy’s Gardens  by the Bay is – in a word – magnificent. While the images here are all taken with minor tweaks to the default windlight for the region, the gardens lend themselves perfectly to other windlight settings, and are exceptionally photogenic.

Absolutely not something to be missed, Gardens by the Bay will remain open through until the end of June 2017. My thanks to Maddy for the personal invitation she extended to Caitlyn and I to pay a visit.

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