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Sunday, January 23, 2011


You'd be forgiven for dubbing it Art Mess rather than ART MAZE 2011, the Zindra based collaboration on show until the end of the month. More than thirty artist of wildly divergent taste, style and talent have been mashed up in a land crossing a couple of sim boundaries, connected by series of tunnels. These days, I'm inworld mostly to look at scripts, not art, but Dividni Shostakovich was going back to the Maze for his second visit, so I got a lift with him. Or rather he sent a 'teleport lure', as the kids are calling it these days. Stuff happens when you're away.
If the ArtMaze Welcome notecard were a dog, it would be a golden retriever puppy; large, good natured, energetic, a bit over excited. It promises "an amazing world of endless imagination and exploration", and "the chance to be a real life travel writer" on their Art Maze website!
I had my doubts.
Oh dear, are we so jaded we can't be amused by the Souvenir Mug? Or persuaded to try on the (surprisingly dry) freebie Teeshirt? The show has its own Linden Rep, Blondin of the same name, which I suppose is code for Nipple Police, although, considering we were on Zindra, nipples were disappointingly few and far between. But that might just have been the sag. I mean the lag.
We did get lost, but not in a good way at first, stumbling against a horrible psychedelic trompe-l'oeil. There's no cohesion in the overall design; each artist improvised the links to the next with tunnels.
It's a sort of litmus test to talent, and the winner has to be the wonderful Oona Eiren - much more about her coming soon! - whose Murder in the Lake build is one of the Maze's best bits.
I never did find the hidden body in the room, and that's the problem with massive shows like this, there is so much going on, both in your brain and on the screen, that it's almost impossible to pay the sort of attention to detail the work deserves.
Renowned ischyophile Scottius Polke was lurking in the bookstacks, and he took me to see Penelope Parx's ants.
Aloisio Congrejo's Universes are also lovely.
But I fell in love with Corcosman Voom's room, hosting not just his 2D art, but two lovely statues, The Flautist and The Aerialist. It sent me back to my tightrope anim, freshly inspired.
The immersive and interactive elements at ART MAZE 2011 are mostly poses in dioramas, the custom music stream and the chance to share your photos and thoughts with the group. Yeah, no, I'm not going to do that. Although it is a contest, so you should enthusiastically stick a photo or two in the hut, if that's not a euphemism.

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