Months ago, I started taking photographs for a series called "Americana": I wanted to shoot typical American places, landmarks and "icons" of American popular culture I could find in Second Life.
While visiting these places, I realized how much signs contribute to define a style, a mood that we can find in any image of cities, roads, stores and streets.
Most of them are retro styled, remembering the great influence that 1930s-1950s graphics has had on designing American popular culture's styles.
Diners, pubs, bars, gas stations, motels... the so called "roadside architecture", a typical American phenomenon, gives us the image of a whole world. It isn't a coincidence that painters like Edward Hopper or Charles Sheeler depicted them to offer a view of their times' America.
Second Life reproduces this mood: we can find a great variety of typical signs on its buildings and cities, where diners, gas stations, motels and bars are the featuring elements of the
I collected dozen signs' pictures, and I tried to make a slideshow on YouTube, waiting to post all the pics on my Flickr.
Kylie Sabra, curator of The Rose Theatre and Art Gallery, saw the show and asked me for an exhibit at the Rose Gallery :)
I'm happy to display again my photo at The Rose, after a first exhibit last year. I selected 20 pics, from the show and among newest ones (I keep taking photos of signs, when exploring) and they will be shown at the Gallery 3 from April 21st.
The gallery isn't used to make official openings, but I'll be there to welcome visitors on Tuesday April 22nd, at 3pm SLT.
The exhibit aims to show a side of the "urban culture" that often is neglected or ignored, having it as a trivial or obvious thing.
But their bright colors, their happy lights, their appeal, their irony, sometimes, give us an image of a perhaps vanishing world that is deeply rooted on our collective imaginery: something like "semiotic ghosts", according to William Gibson's words, that play with our nostalgia and with our desires.
I hope visitors will enjoy them as much as I did when i shot them.