11 May 2012

A Rusted Development

Back in late March, art writer and historian Rowan Derryth contacted me to ask if I would consider participating in an exhibition at LEA1 (a Linden Endowment for the Arts sim). Called A Rusted Development, the build she envisioned and curated would be a collaborative effort by a number of artists led by lead designer Haveit Neox. The other artists who were accepted the offer were Rose Borchovski, Artistide Despres, claudia222 Jewell, Bryn Oh, Scottius Polke, PJ Trenton, Blue Tsuki, Stephen Venkman, Eliza Wierwight and Trill Zapatero. A Rusted Development (click for a teleport) officially opens tomorrow, Saturday, 12 May, at 2 pm slt, and will be on display through June.

Haveit gave a story to the history of A Rusted Development: “The fabled merchant city that rode atop the back of a gigantic whale met with a calamity that ended its existence abruptly. In the middle of the ocean, a horrific storm caused two huge ships carrying toxic chemicals to collide into the swimming whale city. The whale and all the populace died in the flood of chemicals that saturated the waves.

“The whale turned to bones, and the city to rust, it was nearly half a century before this city adrift was discovered. An expedition of artists, searching for land to build an art colony, came upon the decomposing city. With the intent to regenerate the place, they set to work by first towing to safe harbor the floating mass. Each artist then undertook their vision. The empty shell of the city suddenly filled in and expanded as each artist found their niche in the Rusted Development. No longer at the mercy of invisibility, the city humbles its rusted façade to the highlights of the art within.”

I was delighted to accept the offer, but as I began to think about what I could contribute I decided that a gallery of two-dimensional photographic images wouldn't really do the build justice.

For me, A Rusted Development provided an opportunity to expand from Second Life photography, which has occupied my attention for several years, to more active three-dimensional art, although photography is still the principal source material in my contribution. The images I used document the work of Haveit Neox (from this sim), as well as (in no particular order) AM Radio, ddsm2 Mathy, Lucia Genesis, Mandarine Scofield, Koad Sewell, claudia222 Jewell, Cutea Benelli, blotto Epsilon, Rose Borchovski, Darmin Darkes, BaileyMarie Princess, Squonk Levenque, Nalena Fairey, Jenne Dibou, Mandy Marseille, Vikki Placebo, Arduenn Schwartzman and moca Loup. (I may add additional images during the installation.)

My initial thoughts on seeing Haveit Neox’s architecture were to create a space that embraced and amplified the build’s sense of decay: hence my objects that fall, break apart, and fade away, with a randomness that leaves room for unexpected eventualities. (There are actually four elements: objects struggling to rise up out of the ground, objects falling, objects in motion (the gallery images on the walls) and large images that break apart as a viewer approaches.) Curiously for me, I created something I can't really take still images of. :)

My portion of the build is entitled All the Alruses of the Which Ones. (The nonsense word alruses rhymes with the word walruses, although my build has nothing to do with walruses.)

In addition to thanking curator Rowan Derryth and all the other artists with whom it was a pleasure to work alongside, I must in particular thank my friends and extraordinary scripters Caer Balogh and Tiff Trommler for their patience and creativity. I also thank Rose Borchovski, whose beautiful work at Two Fish (which is closing soon) helped inspire my work here. Indeed, a ‘falling apart’ script by Caer used in Rose’s work has been replicated here with some minor changes, with results intended to be more of an aesthetic parallelism than direct appropriation. Thanks to Barbie Pomilio and Juno Angerona (triamix) for their support.

I've not said much here about the work of all the other artists, but it's striking and beautiful. I especially like Bryn's contribution (can you find it?) and the way claudia ably wove her distinctive work into Haveit's build. I hope to write more soon. You can read more on this build in posts by Rowan Derryth and Quan Lavender, and on the LEA blog.


  1. Oh you came up with an intriguing creative idea Ziki! I look forward to seeing it!

  2. ZIKI YOU DID AN AMAZING JOB! Everyone just loves your contribution, well done you! xox