13 Most Beautiful Avatars

Posted by Marisa Olson | Wed Nov 15th 2006 1:16 p.m.

Rhizome is pleased to announce the opening of "13 Most Beautiful
Avatars," a Second Life avatar portrait series by Eva and Franco
Mattes (a.k.a. 0100101110101101.ORG), exhibited at Second Life's Ars
Virtua Gallery. This is our third online exhibition in the Time Shares
series.

More info can be found below and online. There will be an in-world
opening reception, tonight, from 6-8pm SLT/9-11pm EST. Perhaps we'll
see you there. Many thanks to James Morgan, founder and director of
Ars Virtua.

13 MOST BEAUTIFUL AVATARS
http://rhizome.org/events/timeshares/

This exhibition, in Second Life's Ars Virtua gallery (Nov. 15 - Dec.
29) captures the most visually dynamic and celebrated "stars" of
Second Life. The Matteses have been living in the virtual world,
Second Life, for over a year, exploring its terrain and interacting
with its peculiar inhabitants. The result of their "video-game
flanerie" is this series of portraits. The 13 Most Beautiful Avatars
images will be exhibited, in the real-world, at the Italian Academy
(v) at New York's Columbia University. For the Ars Virtua show, in
Second Life, a 3D replica of this physical exhibition space has been
recreated for presentation of an exhibition identical to the "real"
one.

TIME SHARES
Organized by Rhizome and co-presented by the New Museum of
Contemporary Art, Time Shares is a series of online exhibitions
dedicated to exploring the diversity of contemporary art based on the
Internet. Every six weeks, Rhizome and invited curators will launch a
new exhibition featuring an international group of artists. The series
is a component of Rhizome's Tenth Anniversary Festival of Art &
Technology

http://rhizome.org/events/tenyear/

+ + +
Marisa Olson
Editor & Curator
Rhizome.org at the
New Museum of Contemporary Art
  • Franco Mattes | Fri Nov 24th 2006 7:08 p.m.
    PRESS RELEASE

    The Italian Academy for Advanced Studies in America at Columbia
    University invites you to the Opening Reception for the Fall, 2006
    Premio New York Exhibition:

    Eva and Franco Mattes (a.k.a. 0100101110101101.ORG)
    "13 Most Beautiful Avatars"

    November 30 - December 19, 2006
    Opening: Thursday, November 30, 6-8pm
    The Italian Academy, New York

    EVA and FRANCO MATTES (a.k.a. 0100101110101101.ORG) present "13 Most
    Beautiful Avatars," a portrait series at the Italian Academy and in an
    online exhibit organized by Rhizome and co-presented by the New Museum
    of Contemporary Art. The Matteses have been living in the virtual
    world, Second Life, for over a year, exploring its terrain and
    interacting with its peculiar inhabitants. The result of their
    "video-game flanerie" is a series of portraits, entitled "13 Most
    Beautiful Avatars." Not unlike Warhol's entourage of stars, captured in
    the "13 Most Beautiful Boys" and "13 Most Beautiful Women" portrait
    series, the Matteses' "13 Most Beautiful Avatars" captures the most
    visually dynamic and celebrated "stars" of Second Life.

    The portraits reflect Second Life aesthetics, featuring the bright
    colors, "artificial" light, broad flat areas, 3D shapes, and surreal
    perspectives that are typical of this virtual world. Overall, the
    series draws on the technological developments which allow the creation
    of alternate identities within simulated worlds. Despite the relative
    newness of using video game-derived source materials, the avatars'
    icons recall questions common to earlier eras of portraiture, including
    the cultural and psychological context of the images, and the
    relationships between high art and subculture, between contemporary art
    and "traditional" art forms, and between art and life itself.

    Concurrent with the show at the Italian Academy is an online exhibition
    organized by Rhizome and co-presented by the New Museum of Contemporary
    Art. The exhibition, in Second Life's increasingly popular Ars Virtua
    gallery, mirrors the Italian Academy's art gallery, and is visible
    here: http://rhizome.org/events/timeshares.
    Highlights of the online exhibition will also be projected during the
    opening reception.

    Eva and Franco Mattes are known for their controversial artworks, such
    as staging high-profile hoaxes and defeating the Nike Corporation in a
    legal battle over a fake advertising campaign. Their works have been
    shown worldwide including the Venice Biennale, Manifesta and
    Postmasters Gallery, New York.

    The Premio New York is sponsored by the Italian Ministry of Foreign
    Affairs, the Italian Academy and the Italian Cultural Institute of New
    York.

    Few of the avatar paintings will be shown by Postmasters, the Matteses
    New York gallery, at the PULSE Art Fair in Miami, and a portfolio of
    prints produced by Jean-Yves Noblet Contemporary Prints is also
    available.

    The Italian Academy, 1161 Amsterdam Avenue (just south of 118th
    Street), New York.
    Subway #1 to 116th Street
    Monday through Friday, 9:30 am to 4:30 pm.
    CONTACT: Allison Jeffrey, 212 854-8942, aj211@columbia.edu

    http://www.italianacademy.columbia.edu/IA_premioFall2006.html
    http://www.0100101110101101.org
  • Franco Mattes | Thu Feb 8th 2007 11:15 a.m.
    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

    February 17 - March 17, 2007
    EVA and FRANCO MATTES (a.k.a. 0100101110101101.ORG)
    "13 Most Beautiful Avatars"
    Postmasters Gallery, New York
    Opening reception: Saturday February 17, 6-8 p-m

    Postmasters Gallery is pleased to present "13 Most Beautiful Avatars,"
    a portrait series from Second Life by EVA and FRANCO MATTES (a.k.a.
    0100101110101101.ORG), for their second solo show at the gallery.

    The Matteses have been living in the virtual world, Second Life, for
    over a year, exploring its terrain and interacting with its peculiar
    inhabitants. The result of their "video-game flanerie" is a series of
    portraits, entitled "13 Most Beautiful Avatars." Not unlike Warhol's
    entourage of stars, captured in the "13 Most Beautiful Boys" and "13
    Most Beautiful Women" portrait series, the Matteses' "13 Most Beautiful
    Avatars" captures the most visually dynamic and celebrated "stars" of
    Second Life.

    The portraits reflect Second Life aesthetics, featuring the bright
    colors, "artificial" light, broad flat areas, 3D shapes, and surreal
    perspectives that are typical of this virtual world. Overall, the
    series draws on the technological developments which allow the creation
    of alternate identities within simulated worlds. Despite the relative
    newness of using video game-derived source materials, the avatars'
    icons recall questions common to earlier eras of portraiture, including
    the cultural and psychological context of the images, and the
    relationships between high art and subculture, between contemporary art
    and "traditional" art forms, and between art and life itself.

    The project was created during the artists' stay at The Italian Academy
    for Advanced Studies at Columbia University. The Matteses are the
    recipients of 2006 New York Prize for most promising young Italian
    Artists.
    A portfolio of prints produced by Jean-Yves Noblet Contemporary Prints
    will also be available.

    Born in 1976, Eva and Franco Mattes, (a.k.a. 0100101110101101.ORG) have
    been pioneers in the net.art movement remixing famous digital art
    pieces and performing Life Sharing: a real-time digital self portrait,
    during which they even submitted to satellite surveillance for an
    entire year. In the last decade they have created unpredictable
    mass-scale performances staged outside the traditional art venues and
    involving an unaware audience, where truth and falsehood mix to the
    point of being indistinguishable. They created and released the code
    for a computer virus, erected fake architectural heritage signs, run
    media campaigns for non-existent action movies (United We Stand), and
    even convinced the entire populace of Vienna that Nike had purchased
    the city's historic Karlsplatz and was about to rename it "Nikeplatz".
    Their controversial performances, often bordering on illegality, have
    been widely discussed in the media earning them the name "Bonnie and
    Clyde of Contemporary Art". Their works have been shown internationally
    including: Collection Lambert, Avignon; Fondazione Pitti Discovery,
    Florence; Lentos Museum of Modern Art, Linz; New Museum of Contemporary
    Art, New York; ICC, Tokyo; Manifesta 4, Frankfurt; Galleria Civica di
    Arte Contemporanea, Trento and the Venice Biennale.

    For more information on the Second Life project and an interview with
    the artists:
    http://www.0100101110101101.org

    Postmasters Gallery located at 459 west 19th street between 9 and 10
    Avenues is open Tuesday through Saturday 11
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