Friday, June 2, 2023

SLEA3 - A Dark Star

 By Bixyl Shuftan

At the Second Life Endowment for the Arts regions, there's an exhibit named "A Dark Star." It was designed by Gem Preiz, and is listed in the Destinations Guide.

A DARK STAR by Gem Preiz will be the third of 3 installations exhibited on SLEA 3 full region grant during the first half of 2023. It synthesizes the colors of "LINES OF LIGHTS" and the shape of the structures of "COLOR & GLOW", both still on display on the same Sim (see landmarks below). After an enclosed maze of lines and lights, and glowing colors open to sky and horizons, A DARK STAR concludes the series with a construction in 3 dimensions, surrounded by orbiters, and nested in an isotropic 3D universe of glowing lines, the boundaries of which are unreachable.
I, along with Charlee, headed to the listed location at SLEA3 (80/66/319). And the place was quite stunning, a little like stepping into a "Tron" scene. It was dark with neon-like lines of colored light, with small pyramid-shapes on the ground and larger crystals. Hearing some sound, I looked around, and there was some cluster of objects made up partially of white, blue, and purplish light and partially of black spheres, the latter which were moving in and out of the cluster. There was also a "throne" of amber crystal and shapes. We also found a spaceship, and were able to fly around see most of the place from above.

It wasn't long before I got contacted by someone, the artist of the exhibit, Gem Preiz. He told me this wasn't the only place in the sim, but the latest one of three, the two others being "Color and Glow" and "Lines of Light." "If you see the two first ones, you will see that this third one, the dark Star is a bit the synthesis of the others," he described.

"I have been exhibiting fractals in SL for years, then started to build environment to display them, and then the builds became predominant, and nowadays I show mostly constructions if this kind, using much reflections, lights and highlighting of this kind. (It is) purely conceptual, not aiming at meaning anything special, else than pleasure for the eyes. And I like minerals, crystals, and geometries. I like repetitive patterns and try to create some nice ones to look at. ... as recommendation, advanced lighting model , shared environment, and long drawing distance to see everything as I created it.
"I like to build sim wide environments, almost always going off sim as much as I can,  to maximize (for me at least) the immersion I like to be overwhelmed by the environment. 

When I asked what he had made before, Gem answered, "... in summary, many fractals exhibition, several LEA grants in the past, and sim wide builds : skyscrapers, a short model of a modern city, arcadia, a neoclassical city, a space station, a space base on exoplanet. You can see some pictures of everything in my flickr if you are interested: ."

Charlee and I would visit the other two places. "Color and Glow" was just as impressive and striking in its own right. The landscape and some objects would change color every several minutes. Over time, we would see it go from red, to green, to orange and yellow, to blue. So would a "couch" that we saw. There were also large dark spheres that would roll down inclines at some places. 

After some time, we checked out "Lines of Light" next. While interesting, it wasn't quite as good as the other two places, lacking the up and down movement of the other two. Sill, it was worth a look with it's lit blue and reddish passageways.
To get to A Dark Star, head to 
Bixyl Shuftan