The SL art community is in decline? I don't think so...

Last evening I was reading one of my favorite blogs, written by that fully employed explorer Honour McMillan.    She linked to a post on the LEA blog in which the artists who created an exhibit called Aequitas, Field of View said, among other things, the following
The optimism present in the Field of Voices has been replaced by a sense of decline in not only the art community of Second Life but the world in general.
When I read this sentence my mind screamed "nooooooo." Everywhere I go I see art and artists and people engaging in creative endeavors. Particularly in virtual worlds I see people test the waters of their own artistic interests.  I personally have stretched my skills and put my self conscious fears aside to create in ways I never thought possible -- in part because of what I have experienced in Second Life. Sure sims close and when places we love go away it can feel like decline but overall? I just don't see it.

What I see is 20 sims donated by LL for the Linden Endowment for the Arts.  I see Burn2 succeeding independent of any support from LL.  I see privately owned art sims, like my own Art Screamer, visited by thousands of unique visitors during the first week of a fabulous new exhibit.  I see the art community donating more than $6,300 to Bryn Oh to support her sim Immersivia, literally in a single day.

I see UWA supporting the arts in all its forms for many years, and I see a thriving community catalyzed by the contests run by JayJay Zifanwe and FreeWee Ling.  I see new musicians and poets and storytelling -- there is so much performance going on that I can never seem to get to the shows I want to attend.  I could go on and on and on about the amazing art and artists in SL and InWorldz and....well...everywhere.

A sense of decline?  I respectfully disagree.


I took the image above on my phone.  It is an old abandoned factory with boarded up windows where local artists have turned the plywood into their own canvas.  Art is everywhere. Art is thriving.  You just have to look and you will see.


Mr. Crap Mariner said...

*drums fingers*

There's private support for some efforts, sure, but overall, I'm going to stand by my posted thoughts that the overly expensive tier is extremely harmful to the long-term prospects.


Chestnut Rau said...

Oh Crap I completely agree. If tier was cheaper I am sure more people would buy sims. No doubt the expensive payment scheme in place is a problem for arts, education, and ....well everyone except Linden Lab. In spite of that? People still use SL as a creative platform and a lot of good things are happening every single day.

SecondLifer said...

I see no sign of decline, chin up :)

FreeWee said...

Well said, Chestnut. What makes art in SL vital is the dedication to do it despite the costs, despite the technical limitations, despite the criticism. The challenge energizes the process. If it was easy, would it be as good?

julanna said...

I've only been on 10 months and I've seen some big artspaces close. I don't know the numbers, maybe more are opening and closing, but SL is losing art spaces.