Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Crazy Horses!

JayJay Zifanwe – a guy whose name is re-occurring on this blog more times than can possibly be healthy for a happily married man – circulated a notecard stating that the UWA Grand Finale Artworks for 2009/10 and 2010/11 would be on display at the UWA Winthrop region until end of January 2012.
Naughty Nataly & I went along for a look-see.
Now, whereas I can be pretty opinionated about what I like and don’t like, Naughty Nataly can be downright caustic.
I have seen grown artists brought to tears as she pummels them with her rapier-like bluntness!
I like my virtual 3D installation-art to be immersive and engaging. I do not want to stand and simply “look” at a piece of work.
I want to sit on it and walk on it.
I want the hear it.
I want to collide with it, I want to touch it.
I want to be sensed and detected.
I want to engage with it. And be engaged by it.
I want to immerse.
There is much work in SL which accomplishes this. Equally, there is much that does not.
A certain amount of virtual 3D art consists of rotating prims containing a texture animation script. The complexity of the prims might differ from installation to installation, as might the size. The intricacy of movement will likely vary too. Similarly, the texture and its accompanying animation script will differ.
But, unfortunately, when I see such work, not only do I fail to be excited or motivated but I often think “we’ve seen this all before.”
SaveMe Ohl’enfant terrible of the SL art world – has aptly, and really rather astutely in my opinion, labelled such work “screensaver art”.
Now, that’s not to say that SaveMe and I will necessarily always like the same art. Not at all. Further, I strongly suspect she would not like my own work at all, if only because of the use of After Effects, but on the question of "screensaver art" – and a number of other issues – we are certainly in agreement.
With all this in mind, Nataly & I fly around the UWA Winthrop region quickly discounting various installations and investigating others.
And then we came across ‘The Wild Wild World of Illusion’ by RazorZ – and stop dead in our tracks.
This is a fabulous installation.
It ticks off all the boxes on my personal checklist of what an ideal virtual 3D installation should be, and - importantly - should *do*.
It is also great fun with a gentle but skilful “Keystone Kop” type sense of humour.
RazorZ uses the installation to compare Second Life with the Wild West of the old USA and more recently ‘spaghetti western’ films. I totally get that and toyed with similar concepts and sentiments in my machinima ‘Showdown’.
In ‘Showdown’ I used clips from Michael Crichton’s ‘Westworld’, Lawrence Kasdan’s ‘Wyatt Earp’ and Sergio Leone’s ever-classic ‘The Good, the Bad and the Ugly’ to reinforce the spaghetti-western-type “showdown” that was about to occur in Second Life. RazorZ himself cites ‘The Good, the Bad and the Ugly’ as an influence in his installation.
I made a short film of ‘The Wild Wild World of Illusion’ (embedded below) but would like to say that to really *experience* the dynamic energy of this installation, to be properly deceived by the skill of its illusion, to see how detailed and fun it truly is – well, y’all just have to go teleport over and see it for yourself. But hurry, it will be gone at the end of January!
Nataly enjoyed this installation *so much* and had *so much* fun that she almost stopped being naughty for a few minutes!
“Pixie-Squeak,” she said, “I want to rugby-tackle those horses to the ground and take them home and have their babies.”

“Nataly!” I said for probably the twentieth time that day, “That is *so* naughty!”

Pixie xx

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