Summer at Ce Soir Arts has been so much fun! A bit on the quiet side by design, but delightful. It never ceases to amaze us how sweet people can be, for even when they are on their own vacations (or working as usual), they manage to find some time to explore this wonderful world – and when they do, oftentimes, they find themselves landing at Ce Soir Arts. This pleases us no end, for Ce Soir Arts was made with them – with you – in mind!
Whether you enjoy photographing various locales and environments or wish to find a place to dance with a special someone, there is something here for you. If you are seeking quiet time alone amidst a peaceful and welcoming, non-intrusive ambience, Ce Soir Arts could be meaningful for you. And…no matter your interest in exploring, you are always welcome here.
This year, for the first time, we took an almost complete hiatus for late summer. The galleries were vacant in July and August, and we ached for precious art – but found it aplenty at other locations. We so enjoyed traveling about to various openings and exhibits. It’s a marvelous world out there on the grid, and we enjoyed every moment of viewing some of the most unique and beautiful expressions in 2D and 3D art imaginable. It was so nice to visit and explore together. Aeon is a fantastic and insightful art critic and I love viewing art with him. I always learn something – and there is so much to learn simply by thoughtfully viewing.
There are numerous outstanding galleries to enjoy in SL, so do go looking. You can find truly talented artists sharing their work, and you’ll be very pleasantly surprised by the range and depth of what can be experienced virtually – and by the very real import it will have. The Linden Endowment for the Arts (LEA) was busy with exhibit sims open in July, and as I volunteer there in the new greeter programme, we had extra time to look about and experience some very impactful art. We enjoyed particle art, movement, environmental, and other experiential exhibits that were either bright and colourful or dark and dismal; they were all enjoyable and meaningful. Check the LEA Blog to keep up-to-date and to see some fantastic photographs of various exhibits; hear from the artists and learn about their work. The next round (Round 7) was announced on July 20, and some of the sims are already open. Don’t miss them!
Things were not ALL quiet at the venue spaces. Our revered Poet Laureate and Artist-in-Residence, Russell Eponym, continued his tradition of stopping in at The Magic Tree Reading Spot to share from his extensive – and growing! – collection of prose and poetry. As he read from the classics as well as newer works from every imaginable genre (and then some!), friends gathered from far and wide to relax and steep in Russell‘s warmth and reading acumen. His Thought for the Day is always a treasure, offered with the utmost in care; we feel his attention to detail and the height of his motivations as he shares his own deepest thoughts on various topics related to living a good life. That is one of the many things we can trust about Russell: what he offers is done with love and respect for varying points of view; he simply offers his thoughts and allows us to take them in as we will. Ah…how utterly and delightfully refreshing!
Reading also from his collection (also growing!) of personal writings, Russell treated us to familiar poems (Sonnets, Rock Pools, Who is This Man, and others) as well as newer poems still taking shape. Such an intimate and charming experience! The music he plays himself at The Magic Tree (his own compositions, especially) AND those performed by other musicians such as the lovely Kate Rusby and the immensely talented Mark Knopfler always delight and engage, and this summer was no exception. In fact, we saw the largest audience ever gathered for a spoken word event at The Magic Tree this August. 34 were gathered at one point, with seven more having come and gone for various reasons. Every hour is a joy, but those who happened by one Tuesday at Noon this summer got an extra BONUS: dancing with Russell at The Magic Tree! He really knows how to groove…and we enjoyed it immensely, along with the humourous and the more serious of his readings. Do come join us next Tuesday at noon for an hour you won’t soon forget!
On Thursdays, Russell continued the merriment with 90-minute live performances at Ce Soir Castle. 2 PM SLT saw him bringing his delightful folk, blues, and beyond to keep our toes tapping and our chat going. Such fun it is when the Eponymous family of friends gathers! Russell plays a sweet fingerstyle guitar, a right humming harmonica, a bright banjo, and a whole lot more! That velvety voice gets us, every time, whether he’s singing one of his own compositions or a well-chosen cover. Witty and smart, Russell engages us as the time whisks by. From quirky little folk tales set to music to sweet and languid love songs, Russell has them all – and our hearts besides. Russell had quite a fundraising project this summer: supporting the 2014 Ride to Conquer Cancer at the world-renowned Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Melbourne, Australia. Some one dear to Russell (and to all of us) will have extensive surgery done at Peter Mac tomorrow (September 02), and our thoughts and prayers are with her. Kadoodle is a beloved member of the family, admired by all for her strength and irrepressible humour. We adore her and thank Russell – and everyone – for his amazingly successful project. One day, he played – simultaneously – in four grids at once! Wow, Russell! Congratulations are in order!
As you can see, we enjoyed a bustling hiatus. But…there’s more! The Sound Jeweler, MoShang Zhao kept up his weekly schedule, dropping in on his travels around the metaverse every Thursday night at 8 PM SLT. Always greeted by an appreciative crowd, MoShang delivered the CHILL – Chinese Chill, to be exact! It’s always a soothing, energising experience to hear MoShang making his one-of-a-kind, very groovy downbeat electronica. The music itself is inspired by sounds MoShang collects from the streets of Taiwan, his present home from which he streams LIVE at Ce Soir Castle each week. These inspirations lead to a smooth groove that rests the soul and sparks the spirit; we always end the hour refreshed and ready to go…whether we have a full day ahead or a night of dreams awaiting us. That’s the thing about MoShang and his music: it works for any situation, and simply recalling it can bring a deep serenity that seeps deeply in and settles the mind and soothes the soul…
MoShang is unique, playing a range of instruments including the Shruthi – a hybrid digital/analog monosynth that creates an airy lightness to every composition. Even when the tones are darker and heavier, MoShang‘s deftness with this instrument lifts the listener higher…and higher into a nirvana-like state that all but defies description. Creative and warm, MoShang welcomes listeners in to the waves of sound that emanate from the stage – and it’s a singular experience, every time. He’s even created his own instrumentation, and it’s pretty amazing… Check it out at moshang.net and then come join us next Thursday and revel in the beauty of it. Come soar with us!
And on we go. Come join us at Ce Soir Arts this autumn and as summer wanes. Wander the gardens. Dance. Relax. Enjoy one of SL’s most romantic spots and feel the peace and joy as you make yourself at home. New art will be gracing the galleries come September, so come…be inspired tonight!
We celebrated the anniversary of our elopement this August (the wedding was in October, so we celebrate twice!). We thank the many who sent in notes of wishes and dreams. We feel grateful for your kindness and send our very best to you!