22 June 2012

Stirring the Dreams

Second Life artist Haveit Neox, recently the featured builder of A Rusted Development on LEA1, opens today the exhibition Stirring the Dreams at one of his sims, the Port of Sparquerry. The space will be one of four Second Life areas on display in real life at currents 2012, the Santa Fe International New Media Festival, which runs from June 22nd through July 8th.

Haveit describes the concept of Stirring the Dreams as follows: “Our nights are filled with dreams—good and bad ones. But a nightmare that persists over months or years may leave a dreamer feeling helpless to escape it. Haunting dreams set the stage for this exhibit at the Sparquerry sim, in the virtual world of Second Life. The scenario takes place in a factory-like structure and I try to match the somber atmosphere of nocturnal disturbances in this artwork. Second Life, this vast 3D computer world where I’ve built my own little corner, is a valuable tool for constructing a three dimensional environment. In such a format, I stir in a new element of light and hope. Now with an equatorial jungle outside the factory walls, and coiffed with a perched ship amid its canopy, the visitor may travel beyond the original dark space into more optimistic outcomes.” There is a great deal more on his blog, including a map of the entire exhibition space.

For this build, Haveit invited a number of others artists to contribute images, poetry and other material. You'll see artwork by Stephen Venkman, Katz Jupiter and Lila Artis, and texts by Ambrosius Resident, Apmel Goosson, Auryn Beorn, Hazart Monday, Hypatia Pickens, Katz Jupiter, Lilia Artis, Neva Black, Strat Inshan and Temi Sirbu. I was flattered to be among the visual artists Haveit invited, and my photos can be found near the very end of the 'story' on the coincidentally named Bridge of Quests, shown on the last photo of this blog post. (Since I gather the higher reaches of the build are supposed to be more hopeful, less disturbing, I selected some images that to me conveyed serene qualities, and curiously they all have a water theme, which I didn't noticed until I was finished.)

I asked Haveit a few questions about his collaborative process:
Ziki Questi: I'm curious how you went about selecting other artists to participate ... it could have been all your own build, but you chose to ask others to contribute ... why was that?
Haveit Neox: The artists I selected are in two groups. The first group were those people who submitted written works to my previous exhibit called Second Libations. It was on the LEA6 sim in December.
HN: I wanted to preserve them in this exhibit as well.
HN: The second group of artists were specifically chosen for the current exhibit. And I only asked 4 to participate this time.
ZQ: Why do you invite other artists to participate?
HN: When others participate, the space is no longer subjective only... it opens up to feeling more objective to me, more alive. In addition, there's always something about another skilled artist's work that makes me feel 'I wish I could do that'... some element that I greatly admire, and for which I want to journey into our shared destinations.
HN: It helps me build too. When I was a kid, I used to make mud cities in the yard, and a couple friends joined in. I loved it totally.
ZQ: I would imagine that many artists would be uncomfortable inviting others to contribute, not knowing what they might create ... but you seem comfortable with losing that measure of control.
HN: I think so. Not knowing what they will contribute is... kind of like unwrapping a birthday present.
HN: More than that excitement of course, it's the added dimension by that artist, that expands my own interpretion of the space.

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