By DrFran Babcock
Taralyn Gravois has been an avid collector of Second Life™ art since her earliest days in world. She has the practiced eye and sense of taste that compares with the major first life art collectors, and buys the work of others with zeal. Like many collectors, she never had any particular active artistic skills herself, but knew what she liked. Menubar Memorial, a renowned artist and sculptor in SL described her as one of the most creative women he has ever met.
That is why it is so gratifying to see that she has found her artistic voice, and is the subject of a major exposition going on right now. Even more impressive is that her art is completely a creation of this virtual world. She used Second Life™ to make Second Life™ art. If you are confused, I will explain:
Many of the great artists here download their first life artwork and place it on a prim. This is not a negative thing, because there doesn’t really seem to be a way to paint in SL with the accuracy, layers and passion present in the real world. Many artists here photograph avatars and scenery in Second Life™, and their work is incredible as well.
What Taralyn did was to figure out something that no one else has done here, surely a reflection of her gift. Coincidentally, reflection and refraction are a big part of her works, in her show at the Pyramid Café. Taralyn describes her technique as building above Linden water, and then photographing the build looking up from below the water, so that abstract and impressionistic effects are created. Marlee Theas, who visited the exhibition along with me, Lauren Weyland, and Menubar Memorial ( a long-time friend of Tara’s) said that some of the works reminded her of the feeling she gets looking at Monet’s Water Lilies paintings.
Taralyn’s joy at having discovered her way of expressing art in Second Life™ was infectious, and the group that visited felt joyful and alive. That’s one of the things that art can do for us. Taralyn’s show runs until September 28, and is a place worthy of a long and dreamy visit. The gallery is set up very much like a major art house in first life, and the painting burst out of the darkness like phosphorescent fish in an underwater paradise. Enough gushing from me…go see the show.
Visit Taralyn’s show at the Pyramid Café: http://maps.secondlife.com/
About the Pyramid Café: (in Italian) http://thepyramidcafe.
NOTE: If you are very, very lucky Taralyn will take you to her homestead where there is what is probably the largest collection of Second Life™ art ever seen. Visitors get to walk through a giant maze-like castle with surprises and hidden rooms, and astounding art at every turn. You can see famous content creators in SL doing sketches and paintings and items that are very different from the clothing and furniture you see them create. There is also a bit of erotica, but it’s discreetly tucked away. Taralyn assured SL Newser that she is considering opening up her collection to the public, and we hope she decides to do it.