Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Gallery Roundup: Tate-Canning, The Bailywick and Berg by Nordan

By Klaus Bereznyak,

A new month means, for many art galleries in Second Life, new exhibitions. It would probably take a month to get round them all but I have picked a few current offerings of the photographic sort, two new and one ongoing, that are worth checking out.

To begin with, Whiskey Monday has opened with a collection called Alternate Worlds in the Tate-Canning gallery at LEA6. Whiskey's work does not often get aired inworld, so this is a treat.

The landing point is fixed at LEA6 and the gallery is over on the North East side of the sim. Walking over there, the visitor can take in some of Dusty Canning's creations. She describes herself as an old-fashioned prim builder, and LEA6 displays a variety of such works, proving that there's still a lot you can do with the humble prim. Not least of these is the gallery itself, which is based on the Tate Modern in real-life London.

Whiskey's latest offerings pop from their canvasses in the sharp white light of the gallery. Whiskey has an instantly recognizable style, surreal and yet instantly accessible. This series of perfectly composed situational self portraits are wry and, at times, challenging. I found most of the images either resonated with experience or made me see things in a different way.

On to The Bailywick Gallery on Corsica, which is hosting four artists with black and white photographic work through August. I arrived just a few minutes before the sun set and enjoyed the long light falling through the huge windows that make up the front of the building. The landing point is upstairs where work is displayed by Lulyboop Resident and Solana Python.

Lulyboop presents a handful of large canvasses depicting moody and pensive avi-portraits in everyday settings that seem to tell a story. Her selection here feels highly personal. Luly states in her bio that "Photography in the metaverse is a small daily exercise that teaches me to be happy about what I do."

On the same floor, Solana's work is in smaller format and seems to contrast. Cutting into detail and finding the interesting textures and shadows in her subjects, there's both real-life and Second Life material in the selection. In at least one of the pictures I cannot be sure if we're seeing real-life or SL. By her own account, Solana seeks to open new doors for her viewers and put them in touch with nature and our world.

Downstairs, I looked first at GlitterPrincess Destiny's selection of dramatic scenes from inworld locations. These big canvasses, mostly depicting figures, are on the darker side of monochrome, seeming to exploit shadow more than light. To me they had a cinematic atmosphere.

Finally at The Bailywick, with the light fast fading, KodyMeyers Resident's compositons called for examination. There didn't seem to be any artist information available, but Kody's grunged surfaces and choice of scenes with repeating elements makes for some gritty imagery that seems to burn into the mind all the more for being in monochrome.

My final destination was Berg by Nordan Art, where LOSS by Senna Coronet has been installed since July and continues through September.

This very poignant exhibition is dedicated to Amona Savira, Senna having been invited to take up a slot that would have been Amona's if she had not, very sadly, passed on earlier in the year. Senna's images are on larger than life canvasses, depicting the same figure haunting the same space and seemingly haunted by the shadow and memory of another. On multiple canvasses the man seems listless and trapped.

On reaching the second floor I realized that the exhibition setting itself, as well as bing dark, close and almost claustrophobic, is filled with the props and furniture that are also seen in the pictures, setting up echoes between the space and the work in a way that intensifies its effect. The whole exhibition has a felt impact and is well done.

Go see!

Tate-Canning Gallery on LEA6:
The Bailywick Gallery:
Berg by Nordan Art:

Klaus Bereznyak

Monday, July 31, 2017

Lichtbringer's 16 Fields and the LEA Photo Contest

By Klaus Bereznyak

The tripartite collective of Lichtbringer (Light-bringer) have been bringing light to the grid through their collaborations since they first got together in 2015. Their latest installation on LEA26 is called 16 Fields, a sim divided four by four into squares, each square hosting a unique offering of original 3D work.

​There's still time to to enter the Linden Endowment for the Arts (LEA) Photo Contest, open for entries until 17 August, and submit your best snap of this breathtaking show. I'm a sucker for a photographic challenge, so I loaded a roll, grabbed some lenses and set my coordinates to LEA26.

The landing point is in a cafe area (one of the 16 fields) with a well-stocked bar and equally well-stocked information points where one can find out about Lichtbringer and some of their other diverse work. Each member of the group, an artist in their own right, contributes unique skills to the collective. They work with handmade meshes, sculpts, prims, particles, lighting and scripts, endlessly experimenting with light. Beyond the cafe area is a surreal plane with tantalising cubic aurorae snaking overhead, snow falling upwards, shapes morphing and changing color. Whether you are a mouselooker or an ALT-zoomer, you need to get out and in among the lights.

​Immersing here is like being in a continuous firework display that you can get up close to without being burned. I was a little overwhelmed at first, but there are only 15 more fields to see after you have had a drink at the bar, or a late breakfast. Three other AVs were lounging near the landing point and, no doubt, camming. I wandered off in the direction of what first aroused my curiosity, a seemingly dark and static piece, beyond all the swirling light, on a corner of the sim. 

A protester stands under a towering sculpture of the word "APOCALYPSE" with arms lifted in an open gesture. Surrounded by death and dryness, the figure seemed hopeless, but I wasn't sure what the message was here. Some of the fields contain sculpted words or recognisable symbols that hint at meanings but leave it open to interpretation. For all the light in play, the dark shapes in some of the fields are fascinating too.

Across the fields, the light, colors and shapes that are visible are constantly changing, so that no two moments will be the same, offering endless opportunities for a unique photo capture. The scale of the works ranges from a quirky assortment of colorful polygons in a sort of 'playground' on the NW corner to epic structures that dwarf any AV and can be flown through. For the best flying experience, I recommend the high, cubic lattice of point lights, filled with a morphing funnel of particles in the middle of the southern edge of the sim.

To participate in the photo competition for a 1000L$ cash prize and a unique, handmade "namehopper", one must submit a picture taken within the installation. Post-processing is allowed but not essential and there's no entry fee, so it seems open and not too fussy. However, make sure you read all the rules on the competition web-page, especially the detail on perms and how to submit. 

Nobody seems to know what a "namehopper" is, answers on a postcard? I was hoping I'd find the answer somewhere on the sim, and I know what I think it might be, but we shall see. 

Monday, July 24, 2017

Castle and Home and Garden Contest Opens

By Gemma Cleanslate

Sunday at 3:00 pm slt the Castle and Home and Garden contest had its grand opening.Be there! It is a bit late this year but well worth the wait!!!  I have been roaming the regions and am amazed at the gorgeous creations that are filling the sims. I will let you come see them for yourself! Everyone has been working so hard to make the regions look enchanting to the eye. 

Evo ‘KhrysT Neox let me take a picture of his tiny castles , surrounded by larger ones.
 The merchants are setting up their wares in the shops , and, Gotchas, raffles , auctions all set up for you . It is a wonderful event to visit. It will be here all week until the 31st of July. There is music and live entertainment going on every day.

 “The builds are displayed over a set of days, wherein both a set of impartial judges and the public at large can vote for their favorite castles. All proceeds from the Castle, Home and Garden Contest go towards Relay for Life of Second Life, a charity organization supporting the American Cancer Society.” So make sure you visit all the castles and look for the voting kiosk. 

Remember this event takes place on TWO levels. There is a ground level and an upper level!! Please don’t miss those entries up on the top level. There are prizes but even these go to the Relay for Life. I will be taking pictures during the week but walking in and looking for hidden room is much more fun so come over and do it!  

The Otter .. Rowena Dubrov is the founder and  small but mighty lead of this awesome event!

The sims were open at 2PM SL time. The main ceremonies took place at 3PM at CHG Main.  

See you there

Gemma Cleanslate

Editor's Note: This article was meant to go up Sunday morning, but thanks to Murphy's Law, it ended up in the spam folder. So here it is now. Better late than never. 

One can find a transcript of the opening speech here:

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

The Sunbeamer Camp for 2017

By Bixyl Shuftan

The Relay Weekend is the high point of the Relay for Life fundraising season every year, and although some of it's areas are "designer sims," most of what people see on the track are the various exhibits of the teams. Since the members of the team meet up at these places, they've gotten the name "campsites." While some are often nature scenes, often they're buildings or something else.

Made up mostly of members of the former Passionate Redheads when starting out, since 2013 the Sunbeamers, the team of Second Life's Sunweaver community, have been part of the Relay. And every time, several of the people have come together to build an exhibit. Over time, the Newser has written about most of the camps in 2013 (2014 picture), in 2015, and of the 2016 camp which won an award for it's educating the visitors while telling the story of a farmer's daughter discovering she had cancer. So how to follow up on an award-winning build? That was the challenge the team, notably the top builders Shockwave Yareach and Cynthia Farshore faced.

"Shocky was the head builder for this year," Cynthia Farshore told me, saying it was "his idea to make an airport terminal, and he laid out the model on my dinning room table. From that we then took things to a build platform the same size as this camp over (Farshore Field),  about two thousand meters, and began piecing it together. He was able to get the size and placement worked out before it came to here." The camp would be at RFL Celebrate (185/130/22).

Around the main build was a parking lot with a few cars, and a couple airliners and a baggage carrier. The entrance would have people going through a security checkpoint, which included an x-ray machine. Before going in, there was a HUD for a game they could pick up. "Gives a passport," Cynthia told me, "You look for the stamps around the camp, Most are in rooms." One stamp, that of the Sunweavers, was somewhere in the entrance area. Past the entrance, there was a round concourse with a number of rooms around it, as well as one in the center. In each a stamp for the game was placed. Finding all of the stamps would get the resident a small prize.

On the walls were a number of posters of locations, but only a handful were what one would expect to find at a real airport, "In true Sunweaver fashion, we just couldn't put up straight posters." One of New York city was a cartoon picture of someone in a taxi getting robbed and two grinning people looking over a deed to the Brooklyn Bridge. Another showed a "Star Wars" Stormtrooper in an icy place, inviting people to vacation in Hoth. Still another "Greetings from Baghdad" showed a plane dropping a bomb as it flew behind two unknowing tourists. There was also a poster titled "United," which made me think of the airliner which had gotten in trouble a few months ago for forcing a passenger off it's plane. In between the comedy and comedic references were more serious statistics, stating how much money various activities in the treatment of cancer took.

Each of the six rooms represented a real-world location: New York City, Bejing, Rome, Rio de Janeiro, Los Angeles, and Mexico City. In most of the rooms, information about cancer was placed appropriate to the setting. For the traffic scene in New York, there was information about carcinogens. For the sunbathers on the beach in Rio, there was information on skin cancer. For the nude male statues in Rome, there were facts about prostrate cancer. For the food and outhouse in the Mexico area, there was information on colon and rectal cancer.

There were a couple details from previous builds. One was the prayer tower, which launched balloons towards heaven, people able to place names of those they wished to honor. There was also a memorial garden, with a pink fox statue for Artistic Fimicloud, a resident of the Sunweaver community whom had passed away nine years ago. There were a couple smaller pink foxes in the fountain in front of the airport as well, which when clicked gave some information about "Fimi" as she was called.

They were limited with how much could be built, "land is misleading, shows (it) supports 4687, but turns out they limited us to, what is it, 2500? Guess need room for all the million prim furries that will be coming through." Some last minute work on the build, such as placing another couple panels, was postponed until after the judging of the camps due to Cynthia and Shockwave's real-life work schedules, "when I got on I was so tired after doing an all nighter and working all day. Shocky was no better, so we said we're done." Still, they were happy with what they had accomplished. So was team captain Rita Mariner, "I am happy with the way the build came together. I think our builders did a great job and had some fun doing it."

Skylark Lefavre commented, "I think in my own honest opinion this is the best one we did in a long time. Its in it's own rights a competitor, with teams like 'Aliens Love Tatas Too.' It's not only informative and educational, its also entertaining and visual, something you can participate in, almost like a tour. Using the airport take the tour is a nice touch since an airport represents a way into any part of the world it also shows the education of cancer prevention and treatment can reach any place as well."

As it turned out, others would be impressed with the campsite too. It would be awarded second place for "Best Themed Decorated Campsite." Rita was happy, "Second place and fun doing it." Shockwave was very pleased, especially considering the quality of some of the other camps, "Against THIS level of expertise? I'm ecstatic! Couldn't have done it without all of you!"

And so, once again "the little team that could" made a big impact in the Relay for Life in Second Life, thanks in part to the skill and persistence of it's builders.

Addition: Wildstar Beaumont took several pictures of the exhibit, which can be seen here

Bixyl Shuftan

Friday, July 14, 2017

Interview With Ambri Jung

By Bixyl Shuftan

A couple months ago, Gemma Cleanslate wrote about a photography exhibit by Anibrm Jung. Recently, I had the chance to meet up with her. We met up at the Little Red Door Chapel Gallery and Retreat, where she has an exhibit. Anibrm told me the exhibit had opened July 8, with about twenty people being there are the start, "I was really surprised about that many people."

So how did she find out about Second Life? "Ohhhhh long time ago," Anibrm answered with a smile, "I was curious about it and never left. 2006 I started." Of her first days, "If I remember well; I felt lost, but on my second day I met Lorenzo. This guy stayed with me my whole Second Life. He showed me around. ... In that time I met some great friends. Second Life was different than. It was more a community. Nowadays it is like real life. Everybody for there own. I think that is a sad thing. Second Life needs a place for people to hide, run away too and be themselves and meet people and become friends without any obstacles." She felt there has been less community spirit lately, "SL became a business instead of a community"

When arriving, a notecard handed to me automatically by an auto-greeter informed me that Anibrm in real life was a real-life "award-winning photographer for her sensitive and vibrant portraits of nature's works of art," using a Nikon D60 digital camera. Asking her about it, she referred to herself as an amateur, "It`s a great hobby to have." I asked how she got the idea for displaying her work in Second Life. She answered, "That has been some years ago. This friend I talked about asked me to show my photo`s in SL. So I did (smile). He made a gallery and I showed my photos. (I) Didn`t expect any one would come to have a look at them. But they did, and even (bought) some." The exhibit at the Little Red Door Chapel Gallery, Amicus curiae (134, 161, 24), will be up until the end of July.

Asking her about the other location she had pictures, she told me, "Graine Macbain offered me her gallery for showing my Art for a long time now. She is awesome for doing that!" The Graine Gallery and Riverside Cafe is in Blue Curacao (29/44/23)

Noticing she was carrying a satchel, I asked if she carried her camera in anything like that in real life. She warmly told me she had, saying she had been looking around Second Life for one just like it, and had found this only two weeks ago.

For now, Anibrm has no further plans for showings of her work, at least for the time being, "I had a lot of exhibitions in here the last three months and had my plot at SL14th Birthday. So for now this is it. That a love Second Life in all it`s way, but I think the Lindens are taking to much control about it, which will lead to a competitive SL. Where business is more important than fun, shelter, friendship etc." She thanked the Newser for it's coverage of art and artists, "I really like you doing this for artists in Second Life!"

Bixyl Shuftan

Monday, May 8, 2017

Anibrm Jung's Photography And "Crumbs From My Nightmares"

By Gemma Cleanslate

I was able to visit two very different art exhibits in the past few days. The first visit was to view the real life art photos by Ani (Anibrm Jung) , the owner of Art by Nature. The Gallery Graine is where she is showing her very lovely and varied photographs. 

 “Ani is a RL award-winning photographer for her sensitive and vibrant portraits of nature's works of art. Using only natural light and her Nikon D60 digital camera she captures the intimate detail of the life bursting forth in her garden. Framing at the viewfinder, Ani uses no cropping or image manipulation, allowing us to see exactly as she sees and to feel the closeness to nature that is her joy.”Anibrm Jung is a RL award-winning photographer for her sensitive and vibrant portraits of nature's works of art. Using only natural light and her Nikon D60 digital camera she captures the intimate detail of the life bursting forth in her garden. This is the description of her works that is on her profile and I saw this in the photos displayed at the exhibit.

It will be there another week. So I recommend you get over there to visit. There is such a range of diversity, but all nature in it's best form.

My next visit was to my friend Slatan Dryke’s exhibit in LEA6 which will be there until the end of May. I arrived to a large crowd attending the opening party. Many friends were in attendance so it was good to see them all. I went around a bit to see the exhibit pieces. It is called "Crumbs from My Nightmares.”

  Most of Slatan’s work is in motion so it is hard to depict in photos. There is a heartbeat through out the region . I went back the next day to be able to experience it all.  As he says ,”Don't panic, these are my nightmares, just MINE !” I am not so sure

 As I looked at some of the pieces it almost reminded me of a few of my old nightmares. Be sure to pick up the notecard where you can read much more about his thinking in his art and in the art pieces. He says, “I wish to build in such a manner as if I were photographing my nightmares”.  That says it all. Go and experience the motion and rhythm .

Gemma Cleanslate

Friday, May 5, 2017

Jesus Christ Superstar

By Gemma Cleanslate

Arriving at the Royal Opera and Gardens is always a thrill. The building itself and the region are lovely and inviting  The wrong door is always my choice of entry, so I get a grand tour of the hallways and interesting objects before reaching the theatre proper.

Sunday I made my way over to see a performance of Jesus Christ Superstar, a rock opera , with music by Andrew LLoyd Webber. The Compania de Arte Parabola presented the opera. Ina Carpaccio greeted everyone as we entered the theater and .We were given a hud the listed the cast , the background of the opera and the scenes. The star and director of the show was Kar Gabilondo , who did double duty playing Jesus .

 The rest of the cast took on various roles throughout, Esme (EsmeraldaS2008 Zabaleta) , Signa Avril, Mar Shilova, dahir Sapphire (dahirSapphire2 Resident). The music of Andrew Lloyd Webber resounded throughout the theatre during the  10 scenes from the Ovature to the Crucifixion to the Ascension the gospel story is told in rock dance and song.

Esme as Judas.showed his remorse after his betrayal and hanged himself before the final acts took place. The scenery , as usual with the CAP was fitting to each part of the show.The audience showed their enjoyment of the performance through .

There will be further performances at other theaters so keep an eye out for ads. It was a pleasant Sunday afternoon and it was good to revisit a old special play.

Gemma Cleanslate 


Monday, May 1, 2017

The Story of Second Life, 1999 - 2017, At The LEA

By Gemma Cleanslate

Hi all. I am on my way back from a health hiatus, slowly. I got a chance to get over to LEA 25 to visit the spectacular exhibit put together by گиіρєя (Sniper Siemens). If you love to reminisce about the early days of second life and all the fun of learning , visiting the Ivory Tower, camping, crashing, this is the place to go. If you just got here and would like to find out about the early days and the massive changes since the beginning, who is who and where , this is the place to go. 

The installation is fun and interesting. When I arrived, after greeting Philip Linden, I took the train car, which wound all around, showing you historical parts of Second Life and when and how they came to be.

The history of the Ivory Tower is there.  That is where anyone can go and learn about prims and what to do with them to build. It is still relevant today regardless of mesh. Do you know the first name for Second Life? Do you know what 'primatars are’? I always wonder who the first resident I know. The very first years were fraught with problems including financial being the most but to see what came out of it all amazes me still.

Read about Mrs Chung, the first real life millionaire from Second Life holdings. She is still here today, as you know with numerous  holdings. 

I finally got the real story behind the closing of the casinos. I have heard so many! 
The closing of camping was one of the saddest recollections of my memory. I was a huge fan of camping... sitting around in shops  or in the woods of a sim that wanted to show traffic. I met some good friends doing that and made lindens for shopping. There are many road marks along the way

Burning Life and Burn 2 are displayed.. so many memories as I was a Ranger there for several years. I  looked at the earliest maps and ,wow, what a difference today

 The Greenies house is depicted. What a great place that was to visit and hang out. Imagine more than a huge house where you could skitter along the floor while the cat , about 500 times your size watched with interest. We fished in the kitchen sink for prizes and Greenie avatars.I still have several  and get to wear them once in a while. The humans living there never caught on about the mischievous Greenies.

You can see the origin of the Linden Bears, and the beginning of the Linden dollar. This place will keep you busy for a few visits.It was so enlightening as to how and where Second Life really got started and the determination to keep it going. I asked Sniper why she did this region . Her answer is “ This is an old idea. I was Mentor LL in 2006. I've always helped users in SL and this sim I think is helpful to everyone.” I agree! You have until June 23 to visit and enjoy.

Gemma Cleanslate

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

What's New at the Linden Endowment for the Arts

By Gemma Cleanslate

The Linden Endowment for the Arts has many very exciting new installations in both the Visiting Artists sims and the Core sims. I had invites to three openings on Sunday but was involved in the Kickoff of the Relay for Life and missed all three. I went over to explore  the exhibits in two of the sims Monday . Landing at the welcome area was an experience too since it has been remodeled since I last was there . It is worth a visit to check out the new textures and look into the distance at pieces of art that are placed around the area. Here you can see the posters for the new artists in resident and if you stand close to the poster and click you will have a slurl in your chat that will take you right to the region. Be aware that some are still a work in progress. The core sims can be reached in the same fashion and the posters are there next to the artists area. Go take a look.

I then went over to LEA 19 to see the exhibit of my friend iSkye Silverweb. At first sight I was stunned by the desolate landscape but by the time I left I understood and realized it was not desolate at all. Since the sim was empty I had time to explore and see all the components that iskye has placed there. There is a story behind the creations. Read them. She also has her poetry at some of the segments to read and absorb with the story.  Most people have experienced what she did in one way or another ,

“Chaos. Disorder. Nothing makes sense.
Lost my place in a blink, like that.
Reality sinks in, just a bit. “
and will understand why it is set in the way it is. I will let you walk , and look, read and form your own impressions from your own memories.  Visit the “Colors of Loss and Healing “,  art by iSkye Silverweb, music by Ahnue Heartlight, creative support from Dubhna Thiadra,
My next trip took me to the installation “The Art Rocket” by Betty Tureaud.

When I see a rocket by Betty Turead I know I am going for a ride! On landing I grabbed the notecard to give me her ideas of enjoying the exhibit . I took the rocket for a wild ride through the region getting just a glimpse of color and what is to come. When I landed at the base again I put on the hud for a more sedate visit through the levels. At the Planet level I found myself finally believing that spring is really coming. The masses of colors are uplifting! Each level is discrete and has its own flair, but some have connections to another .

Watch for interactive fun.  My favorite was swimming with the fish in the ‘Pond’. The ‘Black Hole’ actually is not as empty as you think. Have fun as you tour using the hud.

I will be touring more of the builds as they are completed. 

Gemma Cleanslate