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From the book: Machinima: The Art and Practice of Virtual Filmmaking

by Phylis Johnson, Donald Pettit

If one seeks an artistic vision that has the power to “stun” the viewer one need search no further than the machinima of SaveMe Oh. In many ways, her work truly exemplifies avant-garde machinima’s unconventional nature. “All my movies are in a way an extension of my performing and composing behavior; of the way my avatar has developed…. The only valuable art in Second Life,” asserts Oh, “is performance art, and this is reflected in my movies.” She describes Second Life as “the canvas” on which she creates. Her machinima “becomes the artwork.”

Like her Dada and surrealist antecedents, Oh invites the viewer to become part of the composition, often forcing the audience to participate by reacting to her art installations which she captures as live theater in her machinima.

Whether filming her audience chasing after flying dollars to remind them of the evils of consumerism, grinding them into hamburger to protest factory farming, or staging her own funerals in anticipation of rejection by critics of her work, Oh creates striking machinima that both challenges one’s thinking and redefines the limits of the genre. Moreover, her art is rarely separate from her politics and provides thought-provoking underlying messages.

SaveMe Oh’s persona, projected by her avatar, has become the vehicle for her art and provides continuity to her work. Among the most controversial of her works are those that explore hypocrisy and the traditional notion of sin and redemption. While machinima as a vehicle for social criticism is staunchly defended by some, others find the approach abrasive. SaveMe Oh’s work elicits both responses in equal measure, reflecting her audience’s reaction to her artistic vision.

From the paper: Machinima, Arte e Documento: Machinimas como forma de documentação de projetos artísticos e processo de criação partilhada em ambientes virtuais colaborativos

By Catarina Carneiro De Sousa

The artist SaveMe Oh’s approach is similar in strategy, being, however, centered on her artistic persona, whose avatar, more than an authorship, personifies the work itself. SaveMe presents herself as a provocative agent in the art world, frequently invading artistic events with her performances, which can cover a whole Sim. Her machinimas, more than documents, are artistic pieces of their own merit.

In reality, this type of performance becomes very difficult to document, even in machinima, due to its participatory and improvised dimension. For this reason, the machinima of independent filmmaker Edward Folger, known in the metaverse as Ed Vespucciano, is particularly noteworthy, who documented a joint performance by the duo Kikas and Marmaduke with SaveMe OH, in Africa Live, in Second Life, with the film “I can’t believe this!” LIVE, 2011. This machinima, despite having a clearly documentary design, demonstrates how the boundary between the document and the artwork is blurred. Another of his works, Le Sacre du Printemps, from 2013, demonstrates this even more clearly. From the documentation of performances by Save Me Oh and the duo Kikas and Marmaduke and using Stravinsky’s music as a structuring element of the narrative, Ed Vespucciano builds a new story.

From the paper: PERMANÊNCIAS EM MACHINIMA: práticas atualizadas

By Fernanda Albuquerque de Almeida

The virtual world of Second Life, for example, is widely used by users who want to have their first experience as audiovisual producers.

In it, there are groups that organize themselves in initiatives whose objective is to develop and propagate artistic proposals. One of the most active figures in this context is SaveMe Oh, who works in the field of performing arts in real life, performs in the virtual world and reworks them for capture in machinima. She states: Second Life offers enormous possibilities that are not used to their full potential. Everyone is perky glued together to the floor to create environments, but no one sees that the avatar itself is a perfect base for all types of attachments that can result in ecstatic looks. I am able to create all kinds of environments in my surroundings in just a few minutes. And this is much more interesting than rebuilding New York or a fantasy landscape in Second Life. I’m not interested in the recreation of real life, but in opportunities that a virtual world provides.

Thus, the artist seeks to develop proposals based on the possibilities of creation and interaction in real time with this platform, addressing issues pertinent to the experiences in this world. Her machinima In Search of Art (Netherlands, 2012, Second Life), for example, presents his avatar searching for art for five minutes in scenarios that constitute, at the same time, a backdrop and extensions of her own body. She explains that such attachments are like clothes that can be worn by any avatar. The idea is to be able to encourage the creative involvement of users in return for passive visitation in environments.

From the paper: Machinima: O cinema do metaverso

By Profa. MS Isaura da Cunha Seppi

The scenarios can be produced or chosen locations on islands and other existing environments or it can be fully attached to the avatar as in the work case “Wear to move?” by artist Saveme Oh.

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