Opening on Thursday morning, September 24th, ::Metamorfaces:: by Art Oluja is the Round 9 installation at LEA 10. Information and instructions for best experiences can be obtained at the welcome area. Sounds and animated art are important dimensions to the installation. There are instructions in the welcome card for best sound and for joining the ::Metamorfaces:: group for updates and events. The CYlents pieces, based on the First Life technique of lenticular motion images and made in collaboration with a model, are an especially interesting process. The region lighting has been changed and there’s more fog since I took the photo above.
“One morning, I woke up to troubled dreams, and realized, I was in a state of metamorphosis. Like a spider trapped under skin, paralysis slowly crawled across my face, suffocating the sensation in my lips, then taking away my ability to taste, swallow, or speak normally. For the following months the distortion continued; I couldn’t smile, frown, laugh or cry, and had become hyper-sensitive to sound.
At night, I would tape down my eyelid to sleep, and think about how to accept my new face, my new mask. I had to learn to express myself despite my lack of facial expression. I had to learn to be me, transformed.
(…In the meantime, I was quietly wandering SL’s landscapes, exploring and observing the loss of prims in SL, a transformation that resonated with me, as more and more prims faded away, and the grid’s face also went through a phase of distortion as it was gradually injected with more and more Mesh.)
My face was a Bonsai tree, raw and torn out of place; submitting to doctors, to technology. Organic roots shifted, branches pierced with wire, twigs tamed, leaves refined.
6 months of drugs, electric therapy, and facial exercises later, I began to heal.
Now, almost two years since I woke up on that Kafkaesque morning, I present Metamorfaces as a metaphor of my story, my journey of transformation. It made me realize, more than ever, that I am a process of constant flux, learning.
Thank you for taking a walk through my reflection.”
This morning I lean over the sink,
eyes half closed, dreams
waiting for that familiar reflection–
behind me, the shampoo on the wall
squints into recognition;
together we greet the mirror
I wonder how long I will have
to lather, rinse
until I’m in a better condition
to face myself today.
A hopeless smile peeks over
a corner of my raw lip, disturbed
as a peppermint sting
of froth flows down my throat. ~ Art Oluja *
I highly recommend experiencing ::Metamorfaces:: more than once.
*poem by Art Oluja used with permission