We're all concerned about the attention and reputation we all have for working in this new world, this new frontier of both art and communication. Often we are subject to media's salacious and attention-grabbing coverage of the lowest possibilities of virtual worlds and the net ("omg naked amatards!!!") This is the equivalent of choosing only to represent the telephone or the automobile by how many cheating husbands and wives use one, or how many murderers or drug dealers use a car and a phone... ridiculous, isn't it?
So I am always happy to report when a university sees the potential and possibilities of this medium and introduces the next generation of immigrants to our world. Such is the case with Cal State University at Long Beach. I was contacted by Glenn Zucman (SL: Lothar Leborski), an instructor at CSULB who, as part of his Art110 class, has introduced students into SL and the artistic activity and possibilities here. Mr. Zucman has his students setting up virtual art galleries in Second Life and has included SL artists in his course.
This is very cool! I am honored to be asked, and I am in extremely good company: other SL artists selected for this course/project include Gracie Kendal, Bryn Oh, Four Yip, Vaneeesa Blaylock, Comet Morigi and Joseph DeLapp. We are in good company also as regards the rest of the syllabus: Banksy, Vivienne Westwood, Shepard Fairey and so on. W00t! Some respectability there!
I've been meeting with the students assigned to study me (laughing) and being an ambassador for Second Life (while also teaching them what "tp" and "LM" means) as well as discussing art in general and my work in particular. It's a lot of fun as well as being important to the image of these worlds as more than a glorified sex chatroom or 3D Farmville, and I am all kudos and props to Mr Zucman for being informed, interested and supportive of the work and explorations we artists are involved in here.