Since this is such a long post, contact details first:

If you’re interested in being an initial participating artist (it’s free, so come on!) and doing an opening salon style event in Second Life ( http://www.secondlife.com ), contact me here or IM me on Second Life under the handle ‘Morning Dagger’ (don’t ask, it’s dumb but Im stuck with it). The gallery location is in ‘Spirit Fens’ at 27,44,33.

So onwards:
I’ve been discussing this with a number of people and have decided to go ahead and buy land and open a virtual gallery space (primarily for DC artists) in Second Life (which is now open for business!). I’m looking for DC area artists to exhibit there. I’d love to do an initial show soon. Most of you have works in the ArtDC gallery and any of those would be good. We’ll shape the show as we get submissions and can gauge participation levels. Just let me know!

I’ll post pictures and movies of the space in a subsequent post later tonight.

I want to get this show on by March 14, but we can delay if needed. Im having a gallery opening part asap…the two dont have to be the same event.

Details:

What is Second Life? Second Life is an online, 3D community. Everything in Second Life is built by residents. You create yourself an avatar to represent you and you basically walk around a “real” 3D world. Ok, nothing too special there…plenty of games offer that. What makes it different, though, is that it is an extremely commercial environment. A lot of what happens there is the creating, reviewing, buying, and selling of products in the game. The virtual money can be bought and sold for real US dollars. Land can be bought and sold on various markets, etc.

Why should you be interested as an artist?

Six reasons:

One, it allows a level and creativity for the development and display of your art and your ideas. As an artist, you really have a LOT of flexibility to do things you just can’t do in real life. You can upload and display your real life artwork and sell it in game (unique virtual copies, or multiple virtual prints) or sell it in real life through the game. All IP you bring into Second Life or create in it belongs to you and you retain all copyrights.

Second, it’s a great – and VERY EASY – way to mock up event or show proposals, sculpture ideas, etc. and have them exist in a landscape/building/environment that resembles the real life one.

Third, it really is cutting edge. You’ll see a lot of articles both praising and damning Second Life, but the arts community there is really taking off. Check the following article out:
http://www.artnet.com/magazineus/news/artnetnews/artnetnews1-23-07.asp

Fourth, it’s accessible. Have you ever had a gallery showing that you just wish more people could see, but they weren’t local? You can have the same show in Second Life and invite those remote people. Similarly, Im intending on linking live DC events to Second Life via video and audio feeds so that people can attend –the same show at the same time- in either Second Life or Real Life.

Fifth, it’s cheap to visit. Client access is free. Paid accounts pretty much just get you the ability to buy land (which I’m already providing for your art). DC area artists will not be charged for space unless they’ve arranged for some really big thing going on or want to have perm installations there.

Sixth, it’s being taken seriously by big business. Reuters has a perm. News desk and reporter there and the largest bank in the Netherlands has opened a branch office there.

Check out: http://secondlife.reuters.com/

So far, I’ve been to a LOT of different art gatherings in Second Life. Group art critiques, gallery openings, community live discussion round tables, etc. The scene is VERY active there and is one of the success stories of virtual worlds in general and SL in particular.

So, if you’re interested in doing an online virtual space show in a serious art community environmen, let me know.

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