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Th e A rt o f M en ta l Il l n es s - A rt Ga l l ery Ma g a zin e

s s New Illnes t l s a e t t n La f Me o t r ibitor A h x E The ay irthd B 8 SL

Jun e 2 011

The Gallery

Chester University Exhibition - an invited artist

The Art of Mental Illness New Home and Gallery

T.A..M.I Creates New Support Group You are not Alone

The Metamorphosis Of Danny Noyes

NEW Comments Letters Feedback

AVATAR 300 PROJECT


Cover picture: Self Portrait-The Metamorphosis of Danny Noyes. Artist: Danny Noyes.


Last month I had a little cosmetic surgery, hence the different picture... This was a Second Life changing experience that had its beginning in RL. The last few weeks have seen a change in medication for me and a clarity of purpose I haven't felt for a long time. The significance of the two differing avatars is the metamorphosis in RL me into someone who is beginning to see the good in some parts of the condition I have. I have not had suicidal thoughts for a few weeks now, and believe me that is a milestone in its self, but it has given way to a self analysis of my past and how influences, if any, bought me to this place. So over the next few issues I will be divulging some of my past that may help others to look at where they have travelled from and where it may lead them. It helped me see that perhaps I can change things ....albeit with a little med help. So this month begins The Metamorphosis of Danny Noyes. I saw an exhibition last week of an artist who suffered schizophrenia. Just that statement in and of itself rubs my fleece the wrong way. The curator saw fit to remark that, “the artist had sometimes less mentally ill moments and at times more sane ones” due to, in her opinion, “ the use of certain elements in the work”. Why did she have to point out that the artist was mentally ill. And what's with the “sometimes less mentally Ill.” This is a reason I have found, and indeed, it has stopped me in the past from exhibiting, why a lot of sufferers wont show their works. They not only are ‘outed’ if you like but, stigmatised and stereotyped to boot. Don’t you think its time in this day and age that we look at the work for what it is not whether it came from a well person or ill. How many times do you see an exhibition where the curator says ...oh yes well the artist had a cold that day and you can tell by the use of some elements of cough mixture in the texture of the paint.. OoooH it boils my potatoes, it does. The work should be appreciated for its imagination and innovation not how its produced. One of the things we are working on in the RL T.A.M.I is,anonymity. The gallery name The Art of Mental Illness should say it all. It’s the reason I choose that name. Thank you to all of you who have donated this last month. We made our operating costs again. If I could hug you all I would.. But its probably against the TOS anyway... WELL


Pa s s th e Pa rcel b y K a te H u d s o n The Art of Mental Illness art gallery has

establishing T.A.M.I. The gallery at the time

moved parcels to a new, bigger and

of writing is still being fitted out but the

brighter home parcel.

majority of the work is completed and we

The site is more than 8000 square meters,

have been getting a few visitors along the

with ample room for the gallery and a new way. beautiful relaxation area where folks can

All genres will again be represented in this

enjoy a plantation hut in tropical surrounds newer version and all artists are caressed by the sounds of the eight

encouraged to exhibit here. The gallery

waterfalls. The gallery is a modern stylish

was purchased from Pre-Fabulous an

building that is more in keeping with what

award winning Architecture Company in

we are doing in first life. I’m sure, if I haven’t second life. The retreat and gallery can be found at reported to you previously Danny Noyes has, that we use the second life project as

http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Lo

a prototype to our real life venture in

ngwood/63/36/22


A rt S tud en ts to H o s t Ex h ib itio n Students from the University of Chester, UK are staging an extraordinary exhibition where space and costs have no limits and the only restriction is their imagination. It sounds like an artist’s dream come true, but for 12 Art and Design students involved in a work-based learning placement at the University’s Kingsway Campus this event is a reality – even if it is an alternative one. At 7pm UK time (11am SL) on Thursday, June 9, two teams of students specialising in a range of creative disciplines, will be going global with their first major art exhibition, thanks to the Second Life network. The exhibition, set to happen online in real time, will showcase digital replicas of the students’ actual artwork, ranging from photography and painting to film and sculpture. Invited guests from all corners of the globe will even be entertained by ‘live’ bands. The placement forms part of a research project devised by the University’s Fine Art Technical Demonstrator Chris Millward who is leading the Second Life Experiential

Learning (SLEL) project as part of his MA dissertation. The project, which was launched last year, explores three main concepts – working successfully in groups, using virtual space to explore artistic ideas and ambitions and the notion of professional practice.

University of Chester

Chris explained: “This placement aims to teach second year students some key components relating to organising, designing and curating visual exhibitions. “Whilst the teaching and learning occurs in virtual space, each phase will be experienced for real during their final exhibition in their last year of study.


Danny Noyes’ exhibition at Chester University

“The project also offers the opportunity for the students to explore scale, space and even attempt other media, with which they are not usually accustomed – all in a risk free environment.” Chris has created The Department of Art and Design within Second Life on a virtual island that consists of two large student galleries, four public galleries, a large Department building with meeting rooms, general areas and a gallery and plenty of outdoor space for larger sculptures. Educationally, students can attend tutorials, seminars and exhibitions through their Second Life and arrange group meetings and activities from the comfort of their own, real home. Only authorised staff and students can create work and display in the building and galleries and members of the general (virtual) public must be invited as guests to explore the creations and join the exhibition group. The Second Life Exhibition will feature the work of two teams of students, Team Optimum (Carl Jones, Laura Chamberlain, Kerry McEvoy, Kimberley Greene, Ebony Torrance, Joe Benjamin) and Team Win (Chris Cockerill, Alex Nelson, Aimee Gosden, Ela Mueller, Louise White and Lucy Taylor).

Danny Noyes a second Life resident, has been invited by Team Win to exhibit some of his work. Laura Chamberlain, originally from Staffordshire and aged 20, said: “Second Life will give us excellent experience in professional practice and will effectively act as a preliminary run for our final year degree show exhibition. Through this process we will learn negotiation and decision-making skills, experience with communicating outside contacts, marketing and promoting.” Kimberley Greene, originally from Runcorn and aged 20, said: “I feel the Second Life project is beneficial to any blossoming

Team Win Chris Cockerill, Alex Nelson, Aimee Gosden, Ela Mueller, Louise White and Lucy Taylor.


photography or art student, as it allows us to work with real artists as and learn about advertising and publicity, which is not only great practice for our third year final project but also for in years to come when we’re out in the real world, trying to exhibit and sell our work. “The networking skills we learn in these few weeks will be essential to us as we progress in our careers. From this project I hope to gain more confidence in promoting my own work.” Carl Jones, originally from Stevenage and aged 20, added: “Because I play video games a lot, the concept of Second Life feels a bit more natural to me as I’m so desensitized to the virtual world. It’s interesting trying to describe and show this concept to people who have never

experienced Second Life. They become completely blown away by the idea of showing real life work in a digital world. “For a young artists such as myself Second Life presents a fantastic opportunity not only to gain exposure and feedback on our work from an outsiders’ perspective, but it also gives us the necessary skills to work as a team and how to run a real life exhibition ourselves.” To attend the exhibition as a guest, email c.millward@chester.ac.uk, and to find out more about the Second Life Exhibition visit www.slel.co.uk which has been designed and built by the students to promote the event. I would also suggest to IM ChrisC(1990) in secondlife for an invite.


R a n d o m V il l o ta O n e o n O n e w ith D a n n y No y es Random Viollita is a transgender and multi-personality in real life and lives her second life in much the same way. She has three personalities in second Life: Random Villota, Random Demina and Midnight Fenwitch. A sufferer of depression and suicidal ideation since childhood she still has the time and compassion to bring attention to transgender suicide and transgender hate crimes. Her alter Random Demina and a friend created the Transgender Suicide and Hate Crimes Memorial, here in Second Life. A poet and sometimes painter, I sat down with Random for a one on one. DN: So tell me about the memorial. RV: The transgender suicide and hate crimes memorial was first built in November of 2007. It was a collaborative effort of Gwen Collins, and Random Demina. It was moved in January of 2010, to the Aloha Dreams sim, where it stayed for a short time before moving to its permanent home in Hejira. The purpose of the memorial is to honour Transgender people who have died as a result of antiTransgender violence, or who have taken their own lives, unable to cope with the

societal pressures, all transgender people face today. DN: How has the second life public responded to the memorial has it been positive? RV: It’s a mixed response. We hear a lot of positive feedback, thank you notes, and instant messages. DN: And the negative? Is it as it is in RL without the physical though? RV: Well, each year we hold a memorial service, in conjunction with the Transgender Day of Remembrance vigils that take place on every November 20th. We often have griefer attacks and occasionally people show up at the site, and make disparaging remarks about transfolk. Two I remember specifically, showed up, and said it was an alter to Satan. Although, I can’t say anyone has died leaving a vigil in SL. DN: So you are a pre-op transgender, what is that like emotionally for you? RV: Emotionally, it can be very rough. DN: In what way? RV: Well, especially when I’m interested in someone romantically. It’s not often I find a partner who is able to handle a woman with extra bits. Aside from that, I’m treated


I've plenty of tears.. But I'm all Out of fears.. Can't wait to see the other side.. I'm holding on to all I have.. When only my heart remains.. and standing at the end of the road.. I'd give you the world.. If I had it to give.. but only my heart remains.. I have a little piece to spare... and if you need me... I'll be there.. You'll find me at the end of the road..

fairly well- not many people can tell I’m transgender in RL. I just look like a very tall woman. DN: Depression I would imagine plays a part too as it does with most people waiting on an extraordinary event? RV: Depression can get serious. I battle suicidal thoughts on a near constant basis. DN: Are you being treated for this? RV: No. I live in the States, medical care is very expensive, and the majority of people in the transgender community live well below the poverty line. DN: So again another stigma forces people to live third world existences. How have you coped with employment RV: I do what I can. Small jobs here and there, cleaning, and I work on computers .It is definitely a third world existence. DN: So what was the main reason you decided to launch the memorial? RV: Personal experience, mainly. Years ago, I was at the Asago suicide memorial. It’s a memorial here in SL, for suicide

victims. I realized something needed to be done for the transgender community and the 9th annual day of remembrance was approaching, so Gwen and I decided to open in conjunction with that. We shifted the main focus from suicide to hate crimes. Again, it needed to be done. No similar memorial exists in the real world, or SL DN: Can we move to the other personalities. Are they only for SL or do they exist in RL? RV: Both. DN: So how does that effect things? RV: Things get a bit hectic. DN: Are they happy with the operation pending? RV: The male personas have faded into the background. My early traumas are directly linked to a feminine identity. They existed more to shield us from the outside world, than anything else. Basically, they hid us. When they were no longer needed, they stepped aside.


DN: I see. So do you create or are you artistic in any form? RV: I like to think so. I write poetry and when I can, I paint. DN: So how has your experience in SL been in relation to your RL conditions and life in general? RV: SL vs RL? Real life is a lot harsher. I believe people in SL tend to find me enjoyable, attractive, and intelligent while people in the real world tended to avoid me earlier in transition. So, I was ostracized, considerably. DN: Do u use SL as a treatment tool for depression? RV: I do find support for depression here in SL, as well as what I can provide to it. It’s also a great outlet for my Alters. DN: Yes so it is beneficial. You know I ask that question of everyone and they all come back with similar positive answer. RV: Primarily, I use SL as a tool for community outreach. DN: And it is good for that? RV: We have an outreach centre connected to the memorial, for people who seek help or information. DN: Who is that aimed at?

RV: Honestly, anyone interested in the transgender experience. Whether it is someone who has a family member who is transgender, a partner, a friend, or if they are coping with transition themselves. DN: Well, you know I have to ask this because I’m also curious, do you get a lot of guys wanting to know intimate details about you? RV: OMG, yes lol. Is it still there? Does it work? What was your name before you started living as a woman? DN: lol so I see you take it all in your stride. RV: My answer is generally, that my real name is Rhionnan Elizabeth Walters and if you need to know the state of my genitals, I suggest you buy me dinner first. DN: It’s been a real delight Random. Thanks for talking with me. RV: You’re Welcome, Danny.


Th e Ava ta r 3 00 Pro j ect The Avatar 300 Project is moving along nicely thanks to the support of Jayme Carolina who published an article on the gallery, in Pure Magazine. Thanks to some first life contacts we are in a position to announce that negotiations are underway with a Sydney University to auction the finished canvas at a fund

raiser to raise funds for a Psychology or Psychiatric student to further his or her study into mental illness. So please get out there and pass along the information to your friends and any groups you belong to. Please note this is not a modelling competition as someone enquired , and thanks to that person who decided not to participate after being told it wasn’t... anyhow just to refresh everyone’s memory here is the previous article about the project. The avatar Project is a collaborative effort between TAMI Second Life and the founders of TAMI Real Life. The project involves painting the images of 300


avatars from second life and producing them on a large canvas that can be exhibited in the real world. “The idea behind this project is to highlight two things. Firstly to shine another spotlight on Bipolar and mental health in general and secondly, to espouse the virtues of a virtual life. The project requires 300 images of avatars to be painted in real life and produced for exhibition and auctioned to raise funds for further education into mental illness. If you would like to be involved please leave an image of yourself on a notecard and deliver it to Longwood /63/36/22 Please ensure the following is on the card. Your name a head and shoulders shot No couple shots. No props, including hats jewellery etc Plain background All participants will receive a free copy of the finished painting for second life and a copy of their original picture for second life.


New S up p o rt Gro up Fo r T. A . M . I b y D a n n y No y es When mental illness strikes, it is usually surrounded by confusion and isolation. Support groups can provide an opportunity to talk with other people who have “been there� and who understand what you are facing. In a support group, members provide each other with various types of help, usually nonprofessional and nonmaterial, for a particular shared, usually burdensome, characteristic. The help may take the form of providing and evaluating relevant information, relating personal experiences, listening to and accepting others' experiences, providing sympathetic understanding and establishing social networks. A support group may also work to inform or engage in advocacy. After much deliberation we decided to form a new group that would have a more

significant and relevant presence in second life. The SL Group for mental illness is a support group consisting of individuals who deal with mental illness,family members of people who live with mental illness, friends, and professionals. A group of people with common experiences and concerns who provide emotional and moral support for one another .The group does not offer professional advise and meets in a pleasant surrounding each week to discuss all sorts of topics that may or may not relate to mental illness. The aim of the group is to engage in dialogue that will promote communication skills to people who have found that t those skills have been diminished through thoughts of shame and hopelessness bought about by the illness. Search under Groups to join.


Ps ych o l o g ica l S u p p o rt in S eco n d L if e A young real life researcher asked a question about Psychological Support in SL in the SL Forums. The response was quite astounding and most of the responses were from people who didn’t suffer any mental illnesses at all. I had participated in this young persons research and found it helpful and frankly, if I can help in the further research into any of these illnesses I will. I was quite pissed at the ill informed replies to the post from these people that I responded. Following is my response: I have been involved with SL since 2005, periodically leaving and returning, as most do. I have been diagnosed with bipolar affective disorder with suicidal ideation. That basically means that in my depressed episodes I constantly think about and plan the taking of my own life. Whilst in this state I fool myself into waiting “just one more hour, if you still feel the same then do it�, until finally the feeling passes. It can take days for the feeling to subside and after this I am totally drained of energy. As hard as I try though, sleep does not come easy. Another thing I do when the dark thoughts come is to paint. I use digital art to ride the feelings out and when I start to paint I

seem to paint as fast and as detailed as I can. The feelings pass after concentrating on small areas for considerable lengths of time. So how did I get to this point....? I was diagnosed with this despicable illness in September 2010 at the ripe old age of 52. But wait there's more. Apparently I have had this illness for the past 14 years or so, and have gone through that part of my life with no medication no guidance no support and no knowledge. I just thought I was the cause of everything that was going wrong in my life, my marriage, my work, my kids..........etc etc.


Understanding. That is the key. But most don’t. I have a relative who had enquired of my doctor after I was diagnosed with bipolar affective disorder with suicidal ideation, ‘so... does that mean he has a mental illness? ”. I kid you not. I hate being a conversation starter at ladies craft groups or being offered ‘non professional’ opinions on how to ‘beat it’ or my favourite, ‘pull yourself out of it’.

These ‘facts’, affect our employment prospects, our social interactions, our relationships, and our ability to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Instead, a lot of us only see that bright light at the end of the tunnel, calling our name. ‘Facts’ that are being perpetuated until those soles afflicted and exhausted of will, believe those ‘facts’ themselves.

So I re-entered SL not to fall deeper into a fantasy world that I could easily let Adding a diagnosis or prognosis, or a consume me but to seek others like me. cause or a presumption of how this And I found them. Hundreds of them, of happened is the underpinning of all that us. We all use this platform as a treatment is misunderstood or not understood about tool as our own research tool not for mental illness. What I’ve found is people diagnosis. Crickey, my own 3 doctors think they know all about your condition, have even asked me to prepare a paper in fact, all mental health issues. How?.....By for them so they can look at commending listening to other people with the same SL to their other patients, such has been assumptions with no factual knowledge at the improvement in me. all. I have found that unlike real life I can help Everything that people say in their lunch people like me in SL. However, I have lost rooms or dinner parties, out and about in most of my skill sets that you all take for everyday conversation about so and so’s granted in your every day lives. mental condition, effects all parts of a Conversations, humour even feelings of person with these conditions life. intimacy can be rediscovered in a safe environment like second life. That is how I Whatever you discuss, whatever your have progressed, through learning again, opinion is, will be disseminated to those skills in SL and slowly introducing someone else, have their spin on it and them to real life. So for those of you who then passed on again. Pretty soon what poo poo the idea of researchers asking started as conjecture and assumption questions about SL/RL remember, no becomes fact, in the eyes of those with personal information is given out. They little understanding.


have only known me as Danny Noyes. I have participated in many over the last few months including Agnepolder’s. And besides I don’t care who knows about me. If I stay hidden the disease wins again, and I’ve had enough of loosing. I want to show myself so that others may want to join me.

And in asking for help to begin that journey, what does he get... Read all of the above posts in this forum. Understanding is the key, that's why I started the Art of Mental Illness art gallery.

New S ectio n s .

I’ve read in the forums yet again today complaints about Lindens doing so and so to the viewer and causing lag etc etc. Hardly a day goes by when someone else doesn’t complain. Lindens should be congratulated and thanked for providing

We are launching a new section next month Comments, Letters and Feedback. So we encourage you to email, notecard or IM any comments and feedback you may have about the gallery, the retreat or the magazine. Here are some of the comments we have received over the this type of environment for people like me to try and gain their lives back. I bet in past few weeks. that warehouse on Linden Alley where Your work is amazing!! I am fasicanated by Linden World began, they never though it the project you have mentioned....it has could be used in such a positive, been a pleasure working on this piece for beneficial way for people suffering mental T.A.M.I. Warmest Regards, Jayme Carolina health issues, an opinion that has been Co Owner and Editor in Chief - Pure expressed to me more often in the past Magazine few weeks. I am by no means cured. I am on the road to a better life style thanks, in part to the support and encouragement of kindred souls in here. That's what I’m grateful for.

Gina Broono : Thank you , I cannot believe how fast you did this, it is wonderful and thank you so much, so very much .Please let me know how I could be of ANY help at all

A poor young Psychology student started this thread. Why because he wants to help. He has chosen to spend his adult working life helping others cope.

Suella Ember: Hi Danny :) Thanks for my painting - it's wonderful. I think the whole idea, and the art of mental illness gallery itself, is great. Keep up the good work :)


Th e Meta m o rp h o s is o f D a n n y Noyes

( p a rt 1)

Anzac Day, for friends overseas, is a national day of remembrance in Australia and New Zealand, and is commemorated by both countries on 25 April every year to honour members of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) who fought at Gallipoli in Turkey during World War I. Anzac day in the year I was turning 15. I had been taken to my mother’s cousin’s work for the day. He had to drive a truck somewhere and one of his colleagues’ drove a Ute behind us to return him to where we picked the truck up. After we delivered the truck we stopped off at a pub. Of course, it’s Anzac Day, a public holiday, beer with the vets, two-up, it’s what you do. Being 15, I was left in the Ute to amuse myself with the radio, blaring out its a.m. mid seventies glam rock, fiddling with the two way radio that obviously didn’t work. The day was a typical autumn day. Clear, crisp, fresh. I saw him coming in the side view mirror but I didn’t take much notice. He looked a frail old man with a chest full of medals a big bunch of rosemary clamped to his jacket lapel. I leaned forward to change the channel on the radio and then ...he was there ....just there, at the window. “Come and have a drink with an old Rat from Tobruk” he said. “No, no I’m not”....and before I could get anything else out he grabbed me. He placed his hand in my crotch and started to grope whilst pinning me down against the back of the seat with his elbow. I was pushing as hard as I could because he was blocking off my airway. I managed to get a scream out and with that he let go and ran off. I don’t know why but I grabbed the microphone of the two-way and started screaming for help into it ....I locked all the doors and wound the window up and sat there until they came out of the pub. It was a while.......I don’t know why but I have never told anyone that episode until recently. That’s why, to this day, I hate Anzac Day. It reminds me of that bastard. I can still smell him and hear him. It’s looking back on episodes like this in my life I realized I needed to deal with them for me to move on through this condition and find a place on the other side of the darkness. There aren’t many of these in my life but they would turn out to be significant. Most of my artwork reflects these moments in my life.


art showcase

More artwork from the

Avatar 300 Project.

Suella Ember

Midnight Fenwitch

Jinx

Aisza Seranno

Angelika Adagio

Caffinelover Selona

Ipkiss Igaly

Gamp Lane

To submit your artwork, please contact Danny Noyes. dannynoyes@theartofmentalillness.com.au

This section is for any artist to publicise their work. It does not have to be shown at The Art of Mental Illness art gallery or be produced by artists with mental health issues.


exhibitions & events Our regular listing of forthcoming events

Yoga

4am - 5am

The SL Group for Mental

Longwood (57, 5, 21)

Mental Illness

SLT 5am - 6am

Illness - Retreat. The SL Group for Mental

Longwood (57, 5, 21)

Support

SLT

Illness - Retreat.

Group Meditation

4am - 5am

The SL Group for Mental

SLT

Illness - Retreat.

Mental Illness

5am - 6am

The SL Group for Mental

Support

SLT

Illness - Retreat.

Group Yoga

4am - 5am

The SL Group for Mental

Longwood (57, 5, 21)

Mental Illness

SLT 5am - 6am

Illness - Retreat. The SL Group for Mental

Longwood (57, 5, 21)

Support

SLT

Illness - Retreat.

June 11th June 11th

June 18th

June 18th

June 24th June 25th

Longwood (57, 5, 21)

Longwood (57, 5, 21)

Group

Meditation Meditation is generally presented in three broad categories, they are concentration, mindfulness, and contemplation and all are forms of mind training. Meditation is about making friends with yourself, learning to see what is just as it is, freeing yourself from reactive conditioning. This liberating aspect of meditation is recognized in a varied of ways, from purely psychological and secular to deeply spiritual and religious.

One of the key differences between meditation

Meditation is not an active process of thinking, it is reducing the waves of thought until the surface of the mind is calm and purusha, or pure consciousness is able to shine through. Everything an individual does in the course of following the principles from the “eight limbs” has a greater purpose, which is to set the conditions for us to transcend the limitations imposed by our mind and our senses, and allow us to dissolve the boundaries that serve to separate us from our true nature.

subdued theta state (normally experienced in

and relaxation is that the first requires physical stillness and alertness to create mental focus and access our unconscious mind. The latter is a way of ‘switching off’, of withdrawing from the world and releasing tension of the body and mind. Both practices can induce an alpha brainwave pattern, but meditation is able to place the mind in a more sleep). Much of the sense of relaxation comes from conscious release of all physical tension – a pleasurable sensation for most of us. This requires little focus after the initial phase, whereas in meditation the preferred upright posture aids mental focus. There is often a focus on sense withdrawal (pratyahara) in relaxation practices, and this is a skill needed for meditation too.


contacts All Enquires, can be made through Danny Noyes at dannynoyes@theartofmentalillness.com.au To subscribe to The Gallery, please use the subscription kiosk at The Art of Mental Illness art gallery at http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Longwood/63/36/22

The Gallery 37 Van Gogh Drive Longwood 63 36 22

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The Gallery June 2011 Issue  

the Art of Mental Illness art gallery magazine

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