art in july

art in july

There is so much going on in the Second Life art world right now, it’s hard to keep up. Besides the installation The Swamp (image of Bloody Hands – The Church avatar above, free at landing), by Meilo Minotaur and CapCat Ragu, the photograph exhibit Loss, by Senna Coronet, and the permanent Gallery M show The Other, by Mich Michabo, at my own gallery Berg by Nordan Art, there are some excellent art shows all over the grid.

There are two new shows at UTSA ArtSpace, curated by constructivIST Solo and Igor Ballyhoo; a collection of photographs by ◦⊱ Mi ⊰◦ and an installation by Romy Nayar. The new nineteen large mostly color, and a few black and white, photographs on display here by ◦⊱ Mi ⊰◦ are taken at The DNA Tower (Igor Ballyhoo), The Sacrificed Angel (Igor Ballyhoo), The Joy Formidable (Livio Korobase), Penumbra (CapCat Ragu and Meilo Minotaur) and Empty Minds (Romy Nayar). They fit so well in the beautiful gallery build created by Igor. To me, each of ◦⊱ Mi ⊰◦’s images has a dream-like quality, which draws me in and consistently holds my attention. There is a painterly quality to her work, which I think at this point has become a major aspect of her style. Bravo, ◦⊱ Mi ⊰◦, such a strong collection. I never tire of looking at your photographs.

The installation Lamento by Romy Nayar consists of three parts. There is a small build in the gallery itself and two other parts accessible via teleport. Each little build consists of various figures, mostly women I think, that are part of a scene, displaying some form of metaphor. It’s hard to immediately grasp the meaning of these scenes, which all seem quite subjective, all in one way or another perhaps dealing with sadness or grief. To me, Romy’s work is becoming more and more surreal, which I like. There was always something magical about her installations and that has not changed.

There is a new exhibit, Creatures of Light, by Harbor Galaxy, curated by Ux Hax and Romy Nayar, at MetaLES. There are twenty large color images on display by Harbor in the intriguing MetaLES space. The space consists of a floor and walls enveloped in a solid, black velvet-like texture and a ceiling adorned with black and white geometric 3D shapes; dispersed in rows throughout are tall, white street-light-shaped poles. Ux and Romy, the talented curators of this place, continue recognizing that the environment housing the art plays an integral part of the overall display and presentation. Love it. It’s very modern and very much immersive virtual art. It struck me, when first viewing Harbor’s images from a distance, that they remind me of something the abstract expressionist painter Jackson Pollock could have created. Looking closer, however, there is much more to it than that; the subject, lines, light and colors merge invisibly somehow. This is a change for Harbor from her previous style. She notes that [f]or those of you who are familiar with my work through Flickr or shows here inworld…CREATURES OF LIGHT may be something of a departure from my usual style. My objective was to use an avatar devoid of ornamentation and to only utilize poses, light and color to create these pieces and to give myself permission to play and to step outside my comfort zone. So great, Harbor; I am in awe of your utterly new and courageous  approach to virtual images.

There is a new exhibit, Absences, by Melusina Parkin, curated by Dido Haas, at Nitroglobus. Most of us know the images by Melusina from Flickr, where she regularly posts series of five or six photographs that display various themes. Her work is minimalist and I believe barely processed with any kind of photo-tools outside of Second Life. There is something incredibly captivating about viewing her series as each image provides a hint of an idea, but it is really the whole, all images in the series together, that leaves one with a lasting impression. The twelve large color images on display in the Nitroglobus address lack, specifically as it pertains to Second Life. Melusina notes about her exhibit that [a]bsence is a negative concept: it means that something should be there and it doesn’t. So, when we look at an empty place – a room, a seashore, a road or even a chair – we can’t avoid thinking of something or somebody who has been or will be there. That’s even more true when a world, including nature and landscape, is entirely made by humans, like Second Life does…[o]n the other hand, looking at empty spaces is stimulating: when humans aren’t there they can be everything. I love imagining what has happened in a place when people has gone. Or what will happen when it will be populated by people. Spaces and objects shape our behavior: they are the limits or the starts of our actions and of our imagination. This is a wonderful exhibit that should not be missed. Melusina’s photographs fit so beautifully in the Nitroglobus gallery, both compliment each other. Head over and take a look.

Let me end with a few comments about other noteworthy art events. The talented Imani Nayar has a new show, My Furillen, curated by Serene Footman, at Furillen. The exhibit Her and Him, by Hillany Scofield, at dathuil, has been extended over the summer months. There is a new multi-artist show, Beautiful Bizarre, at DaphneArts Gallery. DiXmiX Gallery had an opening of a retrospective group show, Best of 2016-2017, yesterday. There are regular rotating exhibits and weekend-themed events at the gallery Blue Orange, the most recent one, Vintage Circus Freak Show. Last, but not least, the Itakos Gallery has been awarded a LEA grant and the gallery relocated to a new sim, the LEA16 Itakos Project. The opening of the new location will take place tomorrow, Sunday, July 16, at 2PM SLT, make sure not to miss it.

As always when it comes to these monthly art reports, I feel I need to point out that there just is not enough time in the day to cover every exhibit. So there are great Second Life art shows out there that I didn’t cover, my apologies. Let me mention here also that I have rarely experienced as vibrant an art world as we see it right now in our metaverse. More than ever before, we see sim-sized installations and photograph exhibits of incredible quality, all pulled together in collaboration by visionary artists and compassionate curators. We are not getting any kind of monetary reward for doing this, we are all driven simply by the pleasure of creating and sharing art. Bravo, thank you to all and keep it coming!

Photographs by Kate Bergdorf
Exhibit posters by respective galleries and artists

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The Path

Fuite en avant

There is a new show at Nitroglobus Gallery that I mentioned in an earlier post; we went back to visit and I decided to put together a more detailed impression of this outstanding exhibit. The exhibit, curated by Dido Haas, really consists of two parts so I ended up also putting together two posts, one about The Path by Nitro Fireguard here and another one about What If…by Senna Coronet and MM (Mysterr).

La longue marche

The statues created by Nitro are avatar-sized mesh figures and other abstract objects with a shiny metal finish. These have been placed in various positions on paths that branch out and extend throughout the gallery and are framed by the photographs by MM (Mysterr) and Senna Coronet. Each little road offers a different experience and ultimately also a different destination. Based on the myth of Sisyphus, the installation touches upon issues surrounding man’s search for meaning in life. In Greek mythology Sisyphus was the king of Ephyra, punished for his actions to roll an immense boulder up a hill, only to watch it roll back down, repeating this action for eternity. Nitro successfully integrates this notion into his beautiful installation, taking us down winding roads on journeys of struggle, love and discovery. This is such a strong body of work. Bravo, Nitro.

Depart

I leave Sisyphus at the foot of the mountain! One always finds one’s burden again. But Sisyphus teaches the higher fidelity that negates the gods and raises rocks. He too concludes that all is well. This universe henceforth without a master seems to him neither sterile nor futile. Each atom of that stone, each mineral flake of that night filled mountain, in itself forms a world. The struggle itself toward the heights is enough to fill a man’s heart. One must imagine Sisyphus happy. (Albert Camus, 1942, The Myth Of Sisyphus)

Photographs by Tutsy Navarathna

What If…

1What If by Senna Coronet and MM (Mysterr) is one part out of a two-part exhibit that opened a few days ago at the Nitroglobus Gallery. I will add a post about the other part of the exhibit, The Path by Nitro Fireguard, here on this blog very soon. Curated by Dido Haas, this show is an extraordinarily beautiful fit for the gallery with its expansive size and reflective floors. The large-sized images on the walls work incredibly well. The photographs also complement the sculptures by Nitro without overpowering them; all in all this is one of the best shows I have seen in this gallery so far.

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This exhibit by Senna and Mysterr is inspired by the poem If by Rudyard Kipling. The photographs are about longing and the possibility of love as well as the fear of loss. The images are all large and seem oversized, the nude bodies depicted expand over the entirety of the surfaces and cover them completely. It is hard to look away. The bodies in these images are either entangled in poses or alone. There is such strong sensual emotion depicted here. For those of us who know the photographs by these two artists from Flickr, this show is even the more remarkable I think. The work we have seen by them is already so stellar and now this. Fantastic work, Senna and Mysterr!

Photographs of images by Senna Coronet and Mysterr by Kate Bergdorf

Three Openings This Weekend

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Last weekend was a busy two days for Second Life art lovers as there were several openings and closing parties at galleries and installation spaces all over the grid, including one at my own gallery Berg by Nordan Art. This weekend is no different with at least three intriguing gallery openings that caught my eye. The first one, at the elegant Nitroglobus Gallery, is the exhibit What If by renowned Second Life photographers Senna Coronet and MM (Mysterr) as well as sculptures by Nitro Fireguard, on Saturday, October 17 at 12 PM SLT.  The second opening is the exhibit Second Life Interpretations by Susy Halcali at the TAF Art Gallery, also on Saturday, October 17 (no set time was specified in the announcement) through November 14. The last opening, on Sunday, October 18 at 12 PM SLT, at the lovely Broad Street Gallery on Crestwick Island, is the exhibit … of dreams and nightmares, showing work by kiki, MM (Mysterr), Mich Michabo, Senna Coronet, Maloe Vansante, Burk Bode, Isa Messioptra, William Weaver, Cipherscape, Harbor Galaxy and Robin. Enjoy!

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Poster by MM (Mysterr)
Photograph of Broad Street Gallery by Kate Bergdorf

Best Second Life Galleries 2015

Best Second Life Galleries 2015

Maintaining this blog I visit many Second Life galleries and I thought it might be helpful to compile the galleries that I like the most, with brief descriptions and locations, as a guide and reference. So I have put together a list of the Best Second Life Galleries 2015. It is a completely subjective compilation and I have included both traditional in-house galleries and large sim-installations. Of note,  I am only including places here that exhibit artists on a rotating basis. I may put together a post about permanent art exhibits and installations at a later time. My apologies in advance for not having included all galleries and I also may have missed some that in fact should have made the list. If anyone thinks that a gallery should be on this list, but it is not, please contact me. Many thanks to Tutsy Navarathna and Igor Ballyhoo for consulting. Thanks also to Dirk Wüstenhagen for the texture used for the logo above. Below please find in alphabetical order the Best Second Life Galleries 2015 list.

Name: Avalon Town
Curator/Owner: Tricia Aferdita
About: Multi-gallery complex

Name: Berg by Nordan Art
Curator/Owner: Kate Bergdorf
About: Gallery space and full-sim installation area

Name: Broad Street Gallery
Curator/Owner: Isa Missantropa
About: Gallery space

Name: Crossworlds Gallery
Curator/Owner: Fabilene Cortes
About: Multi-gallery complex

Name: dathuil Gallery of Art
Curators/Owners: Max Butoh and Lucy Diamond
About: Gallery space

Name: Gallery 33
Curator/Owner: Monroe Smithson
About: Multi-gallery complex

Name: Hills Gallery
Curator/Owner: Hills
About: Gallery space

Name: Holtwaye Art Space
Curators/Owners: Holter Rez and Wayne
About: Multi-gallery complex

Name: Lollygagger Art Center
Curator/Owner: Chrissssy
About: Gallery Space

Name: MetaLES
Curators/Owners: Ux Hax and Romy Nayar
About: Full-sim installation area

Name: Nitroglobus Gallery
Curator/Owner: Dido Haas and Nitro Fireguard
About: Gallery space

Name: Split Screen Installation Space
Curator/Owner: Dividni Shostakovitch
About: Half-sim installation space

Name: Tart Gallery
Curator/Owner: Byrne Darkly Cazalet
About: Gallery space

Name: The Galleries (NORTH, WEST, and EAST)
Curator/Owner: Ernie Farstrider
About: Multi-gallery complex

Name: University of Western Australia (UWA)
Curators/Owners: Jayjay Zifanwe and FreeWee Ling
About: Virtual presence of the UWA, hosting art challenges

Sina Souza at Influence Art

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Sina Souza has an opening today, Sunday, January 25, 2015, at 1 PM SLT at the Influence Art Gallery. I am somewhat familiar with Sina’s work and some of the images you find at this gallery have actually been shown before, still, when viewing her powerful artworks in this exhibit I was left feeling moved by the ones I had already seen all over again. Sina started creating her images in Second Life© in November 2012. Since then she has exhibited widely, most recently at the Nitroglobus Gallery together with Sabbian Paine. I am excited that Sina has agreed to show her work at Berg by Nordan Art from October to December 2015. Check out the Fine Art America website for more of her work.

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I also really like the space, the Influence Art Gallery, where Sina’s work is on display. The quality of the two-story build (by Frasha Boa of Abiss) is exquisite and the size of it is perfect for a gallery. The brick exterior, consisting of a black-framed glass door and two black-framed large windows, wonderfully frames the artworks inside. The sparsely decorated two-level gallery interior highlights the artworks on display as well. My compliments for a beautifully put together gallery!

Photographs of Sina Souza images and of gallery by Kate Bergdorf