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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places to visit now

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There are several interesting places to visit right now. One is the the very recently opened La Digue du Braek, created by Serene Footman and Mlle Jade Koltai Jacuzzi, who also put together Furillen and Pravum Est. Teleporting in to this sim, one lands on sand. There is is a sense of not knowing where to turn and what to do next as no directions are provided. I really appreciate this opportunity to explore, to find my own way. Nice touch. Walking up to the top of a small dune then, one then stands in front of a waterway, on the opposite side industrial builds, completely unexpected. My curiosity peaked. About La Digue du Braek, Jade and Serene note that [i]nspired by La Digue du Braek, a 7km long road near to Dunkerque, flanked by a beach on one side, and heavy industry on the other – a perfect tension between nature and machine. Head over and take a look and if you bring your camera don’t forget to post your pics in the La Digue du Braek Flickr group. The other intriguing place that recently opened, and which has already become immensely popular, is the sim One Caress by the talented sim designer duo Squonk Levenque and Miuccia Klaar (the two also previously created H22O, 2304 Rain, and Treptower Park). One Caress is rainy and dreary, just like most of us love it for SL places to be. Gloomy-looking trees, bears, rusty furniture, and whimsical builds come together here to create a beautiful photogenic whole. Bravo Squonk and Miuccia. Head over and take a look and don’t forget to post your pics in the One Caress Flickr group. The last place worth a visit is Mineral Ridge, a grungy old mining town; a town once booming in the mining industry a now eerie place to visit. Come explore the unknown because the biggest fear in life is the fear of not knowing what lurks around the corner or just a few feet down the street. There are plenty of things to explore here and many photo-worthy corners. Head over and take a look!

Photograph by Kate Bergdorf

Art Highlights in July

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The arts are alive and kicking in Second Life. There are several installations and exhibits on display at the moment and I figured I’d compile some of them here. This is by no means a complete list, but merely a few suggestions. Most of these events have already been posted by myself and other bloggers and I provide links when this is the case. So here are some of the SL July art highlights, listed in no particular order at all.

Gallery: MetaLES
Exhibit: Bury your fears – Bury your dreams
Curator(s): Ux Hax and Romy Nayar
About: See Ziki Questi’s Blog
Artist(s): Selavy Oh
Time: Last day is August 8, 2016

Gallery: Berg by Nordan Art
Exhibit: Yesterday: Retrospective and Close Ups of a Doll
Curator(s): Kate Bergdorf
About: See The Bergdorf Reports
Artist(s): Maloe Vansant
Time: July through September 2016

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Gallery: The Pretentious Gallery (former Broadstreet Gallery)
Exhibit: MEN
Curator(s): Isa Messioptra
About: Men. Some are strong, some are sweet. Some are slobs with smelly feet. Men come in all varieties, handsome, sexy, dashing, sensitive, brilliant, brave, pompous, bastards, pigs, assholes etc. For this months exhibit Isa Messioptra asked ten women to submit an image depicting men through their own experiences.
Artist(s): .kiki, Jammeh, Amona Savira, imani Nayer, Tatiana Easterwood, Maloe Vansant, Kate Bergdorf, Isa Messioptra, Jordan Giant, Oakley Foxtrot
Time: Opens Sunday, July 17, 2016 at 12 PM SLT (open for about a month)

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Gallery: dathuil Gallery of Art
Exhibit: Inked
Curator(s): Lucy Diamond and Max Butoh
About: See The Bergdorf Reports
Artist(s): ElizabethNantes
Time: Open for the month of July 2016

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Gallery: Furillen Gallery
ExhibitWorks by Ini Inaka
Curator(s): Serene Footman
About: Photography by Ini Inaka
Artist(s): Ini Inaka
Time: Closes sometime in August 2016

Gallery: LEA13
Exhibit: Snarl
Curator(s): Mac Kanashimi
About: See The Bergdorf Reports
Artist(s): Mac Kanashimi
Time: Open until the end of the year 2016

Gallery: The Good Days Gallery
Exhibit: [in the dark]
Curator(s): G o o d C r o s s
About: Photographs by Mr. Gausman
Artist(s): Cicciuzzo Gausman
Time: Ends early August 2016

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Gallery: Nitroglubus Hall
Exhibit: All_Most Real
Curator(s): Dido Haas
About: See The Bergdorf Reports
Artist(s): MM (Mysterr)
Time: July and August 2016

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Gallery: UTSA ArtSpace
Exhibit: Reopening of UTSA
Curator(s): constructivIST Solo
About: See The Bergdorf Reports
Artist(s): Rebeca Bashly, Igor Ballyhoo,Eupalinos Ugajin, Ini Inaka, and Bryn Oh
Time: Closes last day of July 2016

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Gallery: Dixmix Gallery
Exhibit: The Bearable Lazyness of Being
Curator(s): dixmix Source
About: Photographs by Maloe Vansant and Burk Bode
Artist(s): Maloe Vansant and Burk Bode
Time: Unknown

Top photograph of MetaLES exhibit by Kate Bergdorf

moon Edenbaum at Furillen

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Something has been cooking over at Furillen for the past few days. There have been a few general announcements and a curious kind of secrecy surrounding the first Furillen photography exhibit, shoot the shooters, by moon Edenbaum. There are three special viewing times, two today and one tomorrow at 9 AM SLT, set aside for this event, only  further contributing to a general sense of mystery. Unfortunately, due to real life commitments, I was not able to attend today and will not be able to tomorrow either. I snuck in to take a quick look this evening, however, and ended up staying a very long while. This exhibit is nothing short of astounding and I don’t think I have ever seen anything like it in Second Life before. It is not easy to put into words what goes on in this show, one really has to experience it in person. The twenty portraits of photographers slowly being projected onto one of the Furillen building walls, the gently falling snow, the meditative music, and the scattered chairs; magical, much like Furillen itself. These portraits by moon beautifully display the character of each sitter and coupled with a short introductory few words they come alive even more. Bravo, bravo, bravo. This exhibit will only be open until Monday, unfortunately, so head over and take a look. I really wish Mr. Furillen-Footman would reconsider and keep it open for a while longer…

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Photographs by Kate Bergdorf

Furillen

Furillen

Now and then comes along a new sim that just blows me away. Furillen, put together by Serene Footman, is such a place. This is a depiction of an island off the north-east coast of Sweden containing abandoned industrial builds, supposedly parts of a former limestone factory. While the sim is not yet fully complete, one already senses what kind of place it will become. Remote, bleak, beautiful, just as noted in the description of the land. This is a dreamlike space were all parts come together so very perfectly; magical music, suggested windlight (Bryn Oh’s Immersiva Grey Dust), grey cement-like ground texture, grunge industrial builds, carefully selected objects, and delicate trees. And it is snowing on Furillen. Several photographers have already found their way here, check out their pictures posted in the Furillen Flickr group. Bravo, Serene Footman, such stellar work.

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Photographs by Kate Bergdorf