The devil’s fork is a small wasteland place in Second Life. Just an experiment with pictures.
” A mysterious overgrown & abandoned garden, filled with weeds, rust, reverie and birdsong Come explore where forgotten stories have come to life…” – Talullah Winterwolf.
IT took me a while to get around to this post because I understand that Talullah Winterwolf is pretty well known in some art circles.. It is not that I am against showing work of known people, but I am heistant to do so because such people will already have enough exposure while obscure artists or new artist or fringe artists probably benefit more from a post by an obscure blogger.. In addition I am not inclined to show work as is nowadays but rather make pictures of the works of others that give an impression or capture the essence, mostly to protect these artist against theft. As suck the pictures get changed and this might not always be in agreement with the artist. If you get my drift.
In the case of Talullah Winterwolf however I was also intrigued by the place where this work was shown, which created an interesting atmosphere grungy atmosphere and I therefore decided to make a post about her exhibition at eleventh birthday of second life exhibition. I want to make a note that this post shows an impression of her work and it is my impression. What you see is not always what you get.
The exhibition look a bit like an unattended garden like you sometimes encounter by houses that have been abandoned. I like the art because it has a kind of disturb beauty in it.
More Talullah Winterwolf:
A movie about the Emphatic Eccentrica build as the Eleventh birthday of second life. The EE team consisted of Almut Brunswick, Ohmy Shalala, Veleda Lorakeet, Laughton McCry, Merit Coba and Tau.
(Text from the Relay For Life of Second Life website)
When I logged on to Second Life today my viewer told me that perhaps the biggest annual event of second life was happening. It was the Relay For Life fundraising event, and it was not only for today: it had been going on for the whole weekend. But those who are regular visitors of Second Life will know that the fund raising for Relay For Life has not limited itself to this weekend alone. Indeed this weekend is just this year’s climax in a fund raising campaign that has been going on for many months and probably will never see a definite end. Relay For Life is almost unavoidable and unstoppable as more and more people, organisations and places from all around the globe pitch in to raise money. I am told by the Relay For Life wiki that last year no less than 40 sims took part in this event and almost 400.000 US dollars was raised. An astounding figure, certainly for Second Life.
The first time I became consciously aware of Relay For Life was two years ago. I still have the picture of the moment, which is dated 27 July 2012. I found myself on one of my infrequent exploration trips and ran into a place that was called Camelot (I think) and it was the home of the Knights of Avalon. The picture shows a flag of the United State in front of the castle(I think there were a few more off picture) . Near the flag there was a Relay For Life donation stand. I was somewhat perplexed to see this rather huge American flag sticking out right in front of what was supposed to be castle from an English legend. It seemed that the owner(s) wanted to make sure that there was no mistake about their nationality. Indeed, it could be that visitors might take them to be English or perhaps even French. Perish the idea, they must have thought. So the flag was put there to leave no doubt.
My thoughts now turned to Relay For Life stand. I had heard of Relay For Life . It was a fundraising event against cancer. I had taken this to be a global event organised by a global organisation as it was held throughout Second Life. But would such an event get a stand at a place of which the owner(s) were at pains to make sure there would be no mistake about their American origins? I somehow doubted that. So I thought at the time and I have to laugh now. Of course there was another possible explanation: the flag was put there because of liberation day, which is on the 4th of July and not so much as expression of patriotism(which is, so I am given to understand, different from nationalism).
However it made me curious about Relay For Life, as it was unclear from the stand who was actually behind this event. Who are we giving money to? Luckily it wasn’t hard to find. Relay For Life is organised by the American Cancer Society(ACS). So the donation stand and the flag did go together in a way.
Did this mean that people from all over the world were in fact fundraising for a national organisation instead of a global organisation? Indeed they were. According to the Relay For Life wiki avatars from eighty countries took part in the event in 2011. Eighty countries? Were these people all aware that they were donating to the American Cancer Society?
But does it matter? I mean, should we begrudge an organisation of one country their fundraising in the rest of the world? When I think about it, I don’t feel that there is anything against such fundraising. Maybe this money is put to good use by the ACS for the entire world population. Perhaps the ACS is the best organisation in the world to fund research into cancer, to finance aid for those who have fallen victim to cancer and organize teaching for everyone else. And if they are, why should we not give money to that organisation instead of some local and perhaps less efficient organization?
For those who want find out for themselves I have some sources listed below and you are encouraged to go and find out for yourself on the internet. But one question can be answered at once from the wiki:
“In real life, Relay For Life is licensed to national cancer societies in 19 countries outside the United States, and the American Cancer Society’s International Relay For Life Program provides training and technical assistance to licensees. In Second Life, participation by residents from other countries is growing, with avatars from over 80 real life countries taking part in 2011.” (The bold lettering is my doing.)
I let you draw your own conclusions.
And for those who wonder if the ACS is actually the best organisation to give money to, perhaps this question can be answered here: http://www.charitynavigator.org/index.cfm?bay=search.summary&orgid=6495#.U8vNbPmSx8E
Some other organisations
This is yet another one of my uhm.. conceptual art kind of mix of language and visuals. Is it a poem? Or is it conceptual art. I don’t know really. I was not satisfied with type fonts I had on my computer.. so after some consideration I decided to make my own instead of trying to find a set that I would like.
Starting a post by writing that I like a game counts probably as a spoiler and it certainly would be -I think- if this post was meant as a game review, but this isn’t mean as such. The reason I write about the game the cat lady is because it is one of those small little games that linger in the dark recesses of steam(the online game shop) and is likable, even though it might not be a good game according to many standards.
So doesn’t that mean the game isn’t worth the money you pay for it?
Not at all.
First off, the game isn’t that expensive, I bought it for just a few euros so based on the cost you don’t need to set your expectations high. But the most important reason is that it combines pictures, music and voice acting very nicely into a neat story.
So what is the story about?
The cat lady is a story of Susan Ashworth, a 40 year old single woman, who is called the cat lady because she feeds the neighborhood cats, who has had some pretty nasty experiences in her past and who commits suicide, she then gets send back by a rather strange(and creepy) lady to take care of the ‘parasites’; people who prey on other people up to the point of killing them So that is basically what you are expected to do: stop the parasites. The story will see you move between realities, between death and live and back and forth between then and now. And your most powerful tool? You can’t be killed. Well, you can be killed, only you come back to live in a short while.
The story is a bit morbid, and certainly gruesome at times. Most of the scenes are set fixed scenes that you look at from one side. There is a little bit of animation to the scenes, but not much. At various points sounds are used and music. It is all used sparingly, but properly and to the point.
So instead of seeing this game as a game, you might also see it as a kind of interactive narrative. Sometimes you are allowed to make different choices, although I don’t think the choices will ultimately result in a dramatic different story. I didn’t explore alternatives, but considering the price and the smallness of the game, I doubt they would have spent a lot of time and effort on exploring alternative story lines.
What I most like about this game was the imagery and therefore I took some screenshots, killed about sixteen of my darlings and show you the remains below.
I think this one is the last post on the monkey mind build and it is about the last participant Laughton McCry. Originally he was not a participant, but because Almut saved is a lot of prims(primary objects) so we were able to make room for one of his statues. Which is shown below. Also he put up some of his paintings/drawings which are marvelous. Below you will see the picture of a mesh statue he made. I also added a picture of mine in which i used it in the background because it invoked a mood of mystery and reference.. a kind like the statues you see on Easter Island.
I don’t have much to add to these pictures otherwise that too me there is a unique style to them. But maybe I am wrong so Judge for yourself.
Some books are rather unusual and Light Boxes is one of them. The book is a fantasy in which anything is possible. February has come, but February has no intention of leaving and the towns people of a unnamed town are subjected to an unending spell of chilly weather dominated by snow and ice.
The towns people are late to resist, for how does one resist February? But February, now personified, kidnaps and murders children and the people, led by Thaddeus Lowe and the Solution, a group of men wearing bird-masks, plan a revolt.
But how to revolt against February?
Light Boxes reminded me of a dream I once had when I was feverish. Logic and reason, causality, death and any other rock solid idea are toyed with. People get killed, come to life later in the story, or make themselves even come to life. February is a man who can be killed, but his death will end the month too. But even February isn’t February, for he could be someone else. And perhaps the cause of all problems might not be February, but maybe it was the creators that should be blamed.
Shane Jones is not tied down by anything and he does not hold back on style either. Almost any kind or writing style is used and this is supported by the design of the book. Some pages just contain one word, others contain one line, some one line repeated over and over, jet others contain huge letters and some are just notes jutted down.
I personally like this kind of experimental writing and I liked the story, but I can understand that some people find it hugely annoying as it is a unusual book and writing style. I hope other books will follow.
The pictures you see below might look familiar to you, and if they do, then you are right. My reason I am showing you these again is because I had posted my first article about Emphatic Eccentricia’s build for the Eleventh Second Life celebration before I determined that there is actually enough material for a separate post for each of the participants involved. And so I started writing…
This part is about Almut Brunswick who has eventually shaped the overall look of the Monkey Mind. Below you see the initial design as was made as a draft at Emphatic Eccentricia’s (EE) Itsy Bitsy skybox. Our preliminary design was made of prims to establish a basic framework for our ideas to mount in. Almut’s idea was to make the build resembling on a computer rack populated with a bunch of corresponding modules and other components in which data is fed and processed to run the Monkey Mind. This framework became the stage for our collaborative artwork
In this computer Almut wanted to have spaces to allow different artists to create their own worlds withing the monkey mind. These space became like modules that like computer boards are plugged into the monkey mind.
Above is an already more developed version of the mock-up build still on site in the itsy bitsy EE sandbox.
This third picture above shows the initial build on our SL11B plot. Initially it was a rather high design with a lot of extra levels. Everything was still done with prims, although in this picture the stairs were already made in mesh. We decided, however, to reduce the number of levels in order to let the building looking more compact and impressive but not too dominant on this prominent corner of the celebration area.
The next three pictures show the final build in a normal daylight setting already surrounded by the neighboring assemblies. Monkey Mind had meanwhile its final height and many parts have been replaced by mesh. All artists had their own modules in the board rack. They equipped their inner side after their own ideas whilst Veleda Lorakeet’s talking robot heads literally conveyed curious visitors directly from ground level to this board level high above the sim. The front displays were equipped with a picture changer script, so that the EE group members could show even more of their work. One eye-catching addition was the binary stream raising up from a pool at ground level which represented a constant flow of world impressions feeding the monkey’s head in the building’s glass dome.
Personally I am happy with the overall result. Regarding the building, I think it was the best one we have had so far, although my personally favorite is still The Masque of the Red Death. Pity that we haven’t had mesh and Almut at this time. I bet she would have been a good addition.