ART110: Wk7: Activity: Avatar Interview: Vanessa Blaylock

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The virtual identity above is what Vanessa Blaylock roles in the second life, named Ancilla Tilia. Today we did a really interesting interview with Vanessa. The picture left below is the cover of museum, it is pretty cool! And the picture right below is the second floor of this museum. We were dancing and chatting together during the whole conversation. Downstairs is like a laundromat when they have avatars come in. It runs for 24 hours. All the pictures are on the walls are screenshots from different performance works. They will take off avatars’ clothes, give them towels to wear like a spa, and then they will wash avatars’ clothes and gave them back to their avatars.

Vanessa has a BFA in Dance from HKAPA. She was used to do dance pieces, then graduated dance, and got a New Media MFA layer. She started doing this work dumb wets because of the graduate seminar a professor teaching from Kansas State University about virtual works. Her students were curating a show of artists they found. Vanessa hadn’t been her at all that time but would up getting an invitation to participate. The virtual place is a sort of “museum” and actually built for the 1-year anniversary of Vanessa Blaylock Company during VR Performance Art Projects. These works have been about many works. It might have been a few weeks or a month to finish that, not full time, but just noodling on it.

From 2009-2013, “Vanessa Blaylock Company” created 50 “Virtual  Performance Art” works in virtual worlds. At present, Vanessa is refocusing a bit from “Virtual Performance Art” to “Virtual Public Art”. So the Performance Art is more choreographed by her, and the Virtual Public Art is more just setting a simple millieu for avatars to participate and express themselves, more public, inclusive and participatory. So they have been working on a few different Marches & Parades expressing identity or solidarity with RL activities.

Vanessa also talked about the early history of photography in the conversation. “In the beginning, photography was rejected as an artform. Peeps(elitist artists) said it was lame and it couldn’t do what painting could do. So many early photographers worked hard to be  “painterly effects” in their photography but when photography really took off when people like Edward Weston & Ansel Adams formed “Group f64″. ”

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There are some works in this museum, it’s awesome!

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Here are other Vanessa’s works:

http://irez.me/portfolio/

http://blog.virtualpublicart.com/tagged/activity-document

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