Art in Second Life 2021 (62) SOLSTICE – The Dark Side of the Sun by Sophie de Saint Phalle and Luxor Ragnarok

I was invited by Sophie de Saint Phalle (perpetua1010) to attend the opening of her latest exhibtion “SOLSTICE – The Dark Side of the Sun“. It is a joint artwork with Luxor Ragnarok, a German media architect, artist and philosopher.
Unfortunately I missed the opening event, instead I visited a day afterwards on Sunday, June 20th.

The exhibition is in a ultra modern tall building with three floors and a roof top event area. I took a few pictures of the building at daytime to get an impression how it looks. Next to the building is a modern place with high poles and other architectutual elements. The smaller poles of this place glow in the dark. The building itself is a piece of art – in particular when you use the shared environment settings (I assume it’s midnight), where the illumination of the building, the poles and the rooftop event area can fully develop. You should keep the environment settings and turn music on.

SOLSTICE – The Dark Side of the Sun by Sophie de Saint Phalle and Luxor Ragnarok

The exhibition itself extends over all three floors. On the ground floor is an exhibition called “Locked Psychiatric Ward”, that is inspired by Sophie’s work as medical art therapist. In the center is an permanet changing object with several faces that displays short stories about patients in German. At the walls Sophie showcases black and white pictures, portraits of people who are inmates in a psychiatric clinic. It’s a quite depressing atmosphere.

SOLSTICE – The Dark Side of the Sun by Sophie de Saint Phalle and Luxor Ragnarok – ground floor “Locked Psychiatric Ward”

On the 2nd floor are paintings from Sophie’s art collection “RED EXPRESSIONS” displayed in a mystical and almost transparent way. They are combined with light, shadow and sound effects from Luxor Ragnarok. Sphie wrote about it: “Experience art with all your senses and feel how we all are connected in harmony. See art, touch art, feel art, hear art (taste and smell art coming soon in SL *winks*)”
The 2nd floor is a good example how art, that can’t develop just in a gallery, can be presented in a very different way in Second Life making the visit an particular experience. Light, transparency and shadows lifts the artwork to another level.

SOLSTICE – The Dark Side of the Sun by Sophie de Saint Phalle and Luxor Ragnarok – 2nd floor “RED EXPRESSIONS”

The 3rd floor is dedicated to an art performance that was presented at the opening event. The performance had 3 parts: “Trapped – Caught in ourselves, Restrained. Are you comfortable?”, “Fear – What holds you back? What are you afraid of? Why?” and “Release – Overcome yourself. Reveal your reality and enjoy whatever it might be.”
Photos in black and white at the walls were captured by Sophie de Saint Phalle during a Real life performance, the unique Second Life performance (that I didn’t see) was created by Luxor Ragnarok. Except of one picture the photos are hard to see, they are dived into blue light and you can only recognize contours. Sophie told me that the Real Life performance, where these pictures were taken, dealt with breaking free from restraints, with the escape from imprisonment.
In the center is a place with several hooks suspended from the ceiling. The hooks are used for Shibari rope bondage art. The bondage in this case was used to symbolize restraints. I tied myself to demonstrate it (just for the arts! *laughs*)

SOLSTICE – The Dark Side of the Sun by Sophie de Saint Phalle and Luxor Ragnarok – 3rd floor “Escape Performance”

Finally there’s the rooftop, the place of the event after the opening. This rooftop disco is really worth a visit even without any people.

Sophie de Saint Phalle (perpetua1010) is a Austrian RL painter and book author. She mainly paints nude from models and abstract art. She loves to experiment with different kinds of paint and lithography. Her favourite materials are sand, plaster, glue, terracotta, stones, bones, ash, charcoal, natural pigments and more.
Sophie has made several book illustrations and was for many years political cartoonist for a well known satire magazine. She lived and worked in the Unites States, Australia, Rome and Monaco.

Sophie de Saint Phalle (perpetua1010) has an own gallery, The “SUBCUTAN Art Gallery and Multimedia Centre“. While the Art shown on the ground floor can be purchased directly at site, the art peices on the the first and second floor can be bought at SUBCUTAN Galleries.

SOLSTICE – The Dark Side of the Sun by Sophie de Saint Phalle and Luxor Ragnarok – Rooftop Event Area

Sophie told me that the exhibition “SOLSTICE – The Dark Side of the Sun” by Sophie de Saint Phalle and Luxor Ragnarok should have stayed open for visitors for a couple of weeks. And she intended to redo the performance just for me. Sadly, a few days later the told me that the place and the exhibition are gone unfortuantely –  art in Second Life is temporory! Hence this blogpost is what is left from the exhibition and the event.  It really was worth the visit for Sophie’s art, for the light effects and how the art is showcased and for the ultra modern building.

SUBCUTAN Art Gallery and Multimedia Centre
Landmark to “SOLSTICE – The Dark Side of the Sun” (NO LONGER VALID)

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